Fire Rated Lead Backed Drywall

When constructing or remodeling medical diagnostic x-ray imaging rooms, partitions, barriers or enclosures that will encounter radiation, it is important to utilize lead lined gypsum board as the most efficient shielding product. Lead backed drywall is engineered and designed to cover the surfaces within a room that will be exposed to ionizing x-ray gamma radiation. The lead portion of the fire rated lead backed gypsum board is manufactured with monolithic and seamless lead sheets available in many standard thicknesses that cover the inner surface area of the drywall to a minimum of 7’0” (or greater), which properly provides the required radiation protection for all common walls and surrounding, or adjoining rooms and potential occupied areas, as specified by the projects physicist of record.

Contact us for more information regarding our fire rated lead lined gypsum drywall options. Our lead lined gypsum board conforms to all applicable Federal and International radiation life and safety, regulations, construction specifications, and current building codes. If you have any technical or design questions call us at 800-444-XRAY (9729), our 75+ years of experience and knowledgeable staff has the expertise to quickly and efficiently respond to your requests or unique design challenges.

Lead Backed Drywall Features

Genuine fire rated lead-lined drywall from Ray-Bar Engineering provides a variety of performance features that allow it to be used for a wide range of applications. The standard features of Ray-Bar’s lead-lined gypsum board include the following:Lead lined drywall

  • Standard Ray-Bar 5/8" Fire-Rated, U.L. Classified, Listed and properly labeled, type RB-LBG
  • Approved and listed in 36 UL Fire rated Partition Designs including 1,2,3 and 4 hour
  • U.L. Fire Rated for 1 and 2-hour wood or metal stud wall construction designs
  • Approved Fire Rated in many U.L.C. (Canada) for Steel and Wood Stud Framed Partition Designs
  • Also available in 1/2" thick drywall without UL fire rating classification
  • Includes 2” wide batten strips for vertical joints and lead discs for screw penetrations
  • Typical standard single workday fabrication and fast availability lead times
  • 12 standard lead shielding thicknesses meeting 99.9% purity per QQ-L-201 Grade C
  • Lead from 7'0" minimum per National Standard NCRP, and available up to 10'0" high
  • Optional Mold Resistant, Abuse Resistant, High Impact, and other specialized board types

Ray-Bar Fire Rated Lead Lined Gypsum Board Type “RB-LBG” Advantages

Ray-Bar was the first ever to engineer, design and successfully test and receive UL approvals and listing on a Lead-Lined Fire Rated Partition Design for radiation shielding applications. Ray-Bar Fire Rated Lead backed 5/8” gypsum drywall provides a wide range of practical benefits that allow it to be used for many unique radiation applications to meet various fire ratings and shielding requirements. Since certain industries require the consistent use of different types of radiation, these facilities need to be constructed with products that protect its clients and employees from the effects of harmful radiation. Some of the added advantages of utilizing genuine Ray-Bar fire rated lead backed gypsum board, include:

  • Reduces risk of radiation exposure when correctly ordered and properly installed
  • Available in numerous thicknesses to meet a wide range of x-ray radiation shielding requirements
  • Provides advanced floor-to-ceiling radiation protection when requiring full radiation encapsulation
  • Incorporates design flexibility for ease of installation and use in shielded walls, partitions, barriers and hard lid framed shielded ceilings
  • Provides sound attenuation benefits due to high density and increases STC performance

Lead Lined Drywall Uses & Applications

Since fire rated lead lined gypsum board is certified for use in shielding environments that encounter high levels of radiation it can be used in a wide range of applications. Lead-lined drywall uses include the following:

  • Hospital and Medical Diagnostic Imaging rooms
  • Laboratories and Experimental Applications
  • Diagnostic imaging rooms
  • Non-Destructive Test Facilities (NDT Rooms)
  • Radiation Therapy, Treatment and Oncology facilities
  • Nuclear Medicine Rooms or Isotope Hot Labs

Fire Rated Lead Lined Drywall Installation Requirements & Techniques

Lead backed drywall must be installed according to the applicable the Federal NCRP specifications, Local State and International Building Code (IBC) requirements. The basic methods for proper installation of genuine Ray-Bar lead backed gypsum board is described below.

  • All wall or partition lead shielding must be bonded to rigid panel drywall or plywood to prevent "cold-flowing" or sagging of lead shielding sheets and falling into wall cavities causing x-ray leaks.
  • Lead backed drywall lead shielding must be a minimum of 7'0" (84") 2.1 Meter above finish floor (AFF) high in compliance with the United States Federal Radiation Safety Codes per National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements reports #49 and #147 (higher may be specified by your certified project health radiation physicist of record calculations and shielding recommendations report).
  • All lead backed drywall boards must only be installed vertically (Never horizontally).
  • All penetrations must be backed with sheet lead of the same thickness (or greater) as required for the wall or partition that penetration occurs in. (Penetrations include but are not limited to electrical boxes, outlets, conduit, pipes, plumbing, ducts, medical gas lines, HVAC, air, etc.)
  • Framing is performed by the customer’s licensed contractor. The metal stud system must be a minimum of 20ga steel stud (i.e.: 18ga, 16ga, 14ga, etc.) and no more than 16" on center spacing or less (i.e.: studs set at 12" on center for heavier shielding applications or structural and seismic considerations) for proper support.
  • Standard steel bugle head drywall screw fastener spacing will apply per code (8" on center perimeter and 12" on center field U.O.N.).
  • Steel bugle head drywall screw fastener type must be a minimum of 1-1/4" length type S-12.
  • Have your licensed project structural engineer review and specify the framing system and fasteners required for all weights, proper structural support, load, shear, seismic and all other considerations as required by applicable building and safety codes, laws and regulations in your area.

For additional technical, installation, details or material information and availability please contact us.


Click here for the Lead Thickness Chart.


Regulatory Specifications for Lead Backed Drywall

Regulatory authorities, code enforcement personnel, and responsible builders value the UL mark and UL's experience as a leader on safety issues. With public safety at the heart of UL's mission, they act as a safety authority resource and advocate for proper building and construction standards and material safety code compliance. With 110+ years as one of the world's leading product safety testing and certification organizations, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is synonymous with safety. The UL mark is the most recognized and trusted symbol of safety in the world, and Ray-Bar is proud to have earned the right to bear the UL mark on its fire rated lead lined sheetrock.

Fire Rated Type RB-LBG Lead Lined Gypsum Board

Ray-Bar’s fire-rated, 5/8" lead-lined sheetrock (type RB-LBG) is the first and original U.L. Labeled and Classified Fire Rated Lead Backed Drywall and Partition System to meet U.S. and Canadian Safety Standards. This drywall product is rated for 1 hour and 2-hour partition applications with pure lead sheet meeting several Federal Specifications, including:

  • QQ-L-201 F Grade C as 99.9% purity (The highest commercial purity for efficient shielding
  • ASTM B749-03 Type L51121

Fire Testing Specifications for RB-LBG Lead Backed Drywall

Ray-Bar’s RB-LBG fire rated lined drywall, shielding components, and related wall systems or partitions assemblies are tested in accordance with “Fire Tests of Building Construction and Materials” and Canada's "Standard Methods of Fire Endurance Tests of Building Construction and Materials." These compliances, include:

  • ANSI/UL 263
  • ASTM E119
  • NFPA 251
  • CAN/ULC-S101

Our lead backed drywall is custom manufactured to exact customer specifications and is typically available in only one working day.

Contact Ray-Bar Engineering for Custom Fire Rated Lead Lined Drywall Today

Ray-Bar offers more combinations of lead backed drywall than any other manufacturer, with over 7 different wallboard types where two or more protective aspects are required. These include X-ray protection/fire-resistant, moisture-resistant, mold-resistant, abuse-resistant, security, or other applications available as required or specified by your project architect or specification writer. Contact us for additional proprietary information, applications, and designs, or request a quote today.


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