Air Cell refers to an asbestos-containing pipe insulation product. It has alternating layers of plain and corrugated asbestos paper. The term “Air Cell” was used as a product name by Armstrong Contracting and Supply Corporation and others. However, the term “Air Cell” can also be used in a generic manner for various types of similar asbestos-containing pipe insulation.
How can you tell if pipe insulation contains asbestos? Some pipes might be insulated with corrugated cardboard paper that contains no asbestos. Others have cardboard paper, yet contain an inner-layer of asbestos insulation. Some pipe insulation was adhered using an asbestos-containing mud/adhesive. All of these may be referred to as “Air Cell”, but the only way of knowing the asbestos content is to perform a test.
The asbestos paper typically had 15%-25% asbestos. While most of the insulations may contain Chrysotile, several varieties may contain amphibole asbestos minerals such as Crocidolite. Air Cell was typically covered with an outer wrap that does not contain asbestos.