Insulating a Geodesic Dome Tent

When building and constructing a geodesic dome tent, one thing to consider is keeping warm in the winter and cool in the summer. At its core, a geodesic dome is essentially an elaborate tent needed ventilation, insulation and a way to heat and cool the tent. Below is a brief explanation of how this can be accomplished from season to season. This page will cover the basics of geodesic dome tent insulation.

There are three commonly used insulation methods for geodesic glamping tents.

Standard Cotton Stretch Insulation Layer = Estimated 2.85 R

Geodesic Dome Tent

Our cloth insulation has been tested and rated in clo units, just like the insulative qualities of clothes. And the R-units apply mostly to construction materials.

But the measurement units of both clo and R are the same. So we can convert one into another. Here is a quick glance at the clo units:



Clo value measures the thermal resistance value of clothing, especially as it relates to relative human comfort within that clothing at a given set of conditions. Clo value is approximately calculated by multiplying R-value by 1.136:

  • ICL = R * 1.136

Clo has the same units as thermal resistance R but has a specific magnitude relative to human comfort:

  • 1 clo maintains the temperature comfort of a passive man indefinitely at 21°C, 50% RH, and a wind speed of 0.01 m/sec.
  • Wind speed effects clothing insulation
  • Porosity - water vapour transfer through clothing affects its insulation
  • 1 clo = 0.155 m2 °C/W
  • The lowest clo value is 0 (naked body)
  • Highest practical clo value = 4 clo (complete body coverage with high R-value items – aerogel coat and gloves, etc.)
  • Summer clothing ~ 0.6 clo
  • Winter clothing ~1 clo
  • Aerogel fabrics, because they have such a large relative R-value compared to traditional clothing insulation materials, will change the relative weight of a garment required to meet a given clo value.

So, we have a report where a testing company measured our insulation as 3.24 clo. 3.24 / 1.136 = 2.85. The R-value equivalent is 2.85 R.

10MM Sub Zero Insulation Liner = Estimated 8.55 R

Want your geodesic dome to stay cooler in summer and warmer in winter? Regulate the temperature with our Heat/Cold Insulation Fabric Layer. Consider this at a minimum for a 4 season application.
This insulation layer helps reduce air conditioning costs on hot days and heating costs on cold days -- and it gives you an all-around stable room temperature between the extremes. Use this layer to help regulate your dome’s temperature. With a heat/AC source, our Heat/Cold Insulation Fabric Layer can make a crucial difference in comfort inside your dome.
This insulation layer is 5mm thick and is synthetic insulation quilted between two pieces of cotton.
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Taking into consideration the previous calculation, this insulation would have an 8.55 R-value.

Oxford & Foil Extreme Temperature Insulating Panels = Estimated 10.6 R

Above and beyond the 10MM quilted insulation liner, we offer an extreme-temperature insulating layer. A breathable, multi-foil insulation layer with oxford cotton lining provides efficient thermal insulation in every condition while being very thin and adaptable at the same time. The insulation system keeps the inside cool during warmer days and warm during colder days. It also acts as a vapour barrier, preventing moisture from building inside the dome.

The R-value depends upon the application type used; generally, the following values are a good guideline: R-value is roughly 5.3 when used in a floor; R value is roughly 6.8 when used in a wall; and R-value is roughly 10.6 when used in a ceiling. These R-factors are just approximations and are not specific R- values for building codes. This product has not been tested to government specifications in regard to actual R-values.

  • Thermal Bubble insulation - 3mm thickness with up to 98% reflective material
  • Cotton oxford insulation finish adds additional insulation, and a finished luxury looks to the interior of the dome.
  • Radiation heat reflection coefficient: up to 85% 

Please be aware that these R-factors are just guidelines; this product has not been tested to government specifications regarding actual R-values. These are just approximations and are not specific R- values for building codes.

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