Room partitions are used to separate interior space for work or privacy. They are used in a variety of commercial, industrial and educational settings. There are two major categories of room partitions: folding panel and accordion. For both types, specifications include dimensions, mounting style, and materials of construction. Sound transmission (STC) class is also an important parameter to consider. The STC class is a single-number rating that describes the ability to resist airborne sound transfer at frequencies 125 to 4000 Hz. Typically, the STC class is determined by measuring the transmission loss over a range of 16 different frequencies. As a rule, room partitions with higher STC ratings block the passage of more noise. STC classes do not, however, account for low-frequency sound transfers from mechanical equipment.
Folding Panel Partitions
Folding panel partitions are top-mounted room partitions that slide along a metal track. These permanent-looking room dividers have wide panels and steel frames, but are still relatively easy to move. Typically, the panels are made of high-density fiberboard or gypsum board. They may be filled with acoustically insulating foam and covered with carpet, fabric, or vinyl to match the appearance of the room or facility. Folding panels with chalkboard, marker board and white board surfaces are also available. Often, these work surfaces have a chalk / marker rail and recessed pockets for erasers. Some folding panel room partitions are equipped with tongue-and-groove trim astragals and multiple sound seals. Others have finger-style seals along the bottom track.
Accordion partitions are ceiling-supported room partitions that resemble drapes. These economical room dividers are supported by steel wheels with ball bearings and run along a metal track. To prevent frame sag, trolleys support the hinge joints. A travel-limit chain prevents the hinges on the room partitions from being overextended. Typically, the panels are made of fabric-backed vinyl or other composite materials. They are fire retardant and may include an acoustical liner made of polymer foam. Welded steel frames provide rigidity, but without adding significant amounts of weight. Room partitions with an all-steel construction are also available, and have steel slats for improved strength. Accessories include pulls and tiebacks, sliding jambs, pocket doors, and meeting posts.