The researchers of the Fraunhofer IBP examined the energy-efficiency and the effects regarding the building physic of four different wall heating systems at the Fraunhofer Center for the Energy-Saving Renovation of Old Buildings and the Preservation of Monuments at Benediktbeuern.
If only we could control the weather! While for most of us this remains pie in the sky, it’s an everyday occurrence for engineer Andreas Zegowitz and his team from the Thermal Parameters and Laboratory Climate Simulation group.
Averaged out over a year, temperatures in greater urban areas, cities and megacities all across the world are now one to two Kelvin higher than in the surrounding rural areas. Depending on the size of the settlement, the temperature difference can be as much as ten Kelvin, which has given rise to the term “urban heat island.”
A novel paving stone concept should now help to reduce this effect.
A project funded by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) and bringing together partners in Denmark, Ireland, Portugal and Germany, has come up with a novel window system. Equipped with electronically controlled ventilation flaps, it can pre-warm the air you need to ventilate your rooms.
Usability tests on blinds sandwiched between vacuum-glazed panes are necessary to guarantee that such systems last long enough once installed. Frequent cases of damage show that even systems that have already been tested are often faulty.
Research on the hygrothermal behavior of window/wall connections was carried out in the dual-chamber climate simulator using two types of PU foam adhesive, without films for additional sealing. For the comparison, commercially available joint filler with caulking as well as with interior and exterior films was tested under the same climactic conditions.
Our growing dependence on electronic equipment to help us, both in industry and in daily life, means more and more cleanrooms are needed by companies such as microchip manufacturers. Cleanroom air exchange requirements are particularly stringent, and as a result it is vital that their construction systems meet exacting air permeability criteria.
For manufacturers of composite thermal insulation systems, microbial growth on thermally insulated façades still poses a problem. Approaches to solving the problem using building physics are all based on the idea of reducing moisture on the surface of the façade.
Insulation materials reduce the amount of heat that external components transfer away from the building’s interior. In terms of building physics, this increases the probability that condensation might form on the outer surface of the façade due to the cooling effect of long-wave radiation of heat during the night.
The Fraunhofer IBP has a flexible roof testing facility designed specifically for pitched roofs. Adjustments to the roof incline can be made in step-wise fashion, and various roof setups can be installed next to each other and then oriented as desired to the north or south.
In many cases, the only way to improve a building’s thermal protection is to install interior insulation. The standard way to avoid condensation forming on the back of the insulation is to fit a vapor retarder or moisture barrier to the insulation on the side facing the building’s interior. The catch is that this gets in the way of the insulation drying out in dry weather.
The use of render on external walls is an ancient craft based on traditional methods that have been handed down over the centuries and mainly make use of locally sourced construction materials, binders and additives. It wasn’t until 100 years ago or so that the first attempts at standardization were made and rendering became a subject of scientific research.
In most cases the simulations are based on climate data originally compiled for use when dimensioning heating and air conditioning systems. These data focus more on temperature than on humidity, and are therefore less suited to the hygrothermal analysis of building components.
The overall objective of this project is to create a robust and reliable base of climate data to be used with the building physics simulation techniques. These in turn promote energy-optimized construction and support climate-friendly renovation measures for existing buildings.
Internal insulation with fiber insulation materials
From a building physics perspective, internal insulation is usually less desirable than external as far as thermal bridges (heat loss), condensation and drying potential are concerned. This makes careful planning and execution a prerequisite for anyone wanting to install internal insulation that is going to last.
Reverse roof insulation does not employ additional seals to protect against the effects of weather. The outer layers for instance made of paving stones, gravel or substrates, also serve to store more moisture from precipitation, which means the area above the insulation usually experiences only short dry periods.
Climate change is endangering centuries-old murals and frescos, paintings, furniture and textiles. Can this deterioration be halted? Researchers are searching for solutions in the “Climate for Culture” EU project.
Museums, palaces and other historic buildings around the world are home to irreplaceable cultural treasures – centuries-old paintings, prized furniture and costly textiles to mention only a few. In northern Europe, mould growth or a higher risk of infestation with pests and insects could put all that into jeopardy, driven by projected increases in precipitation and changing outdoor and indoor temperature up to the year 2100.
Together, Fraunhofer IBP and its Working Group on Preservation of Historic Monuments and Preventive Conservation run the Fraunhofer Center for the Energy-Saving Renovation of Old Buildings and the Preservation of Monuments, which is located in Benediktbeuern Abbey.
Collections are frequently left to municipal archives or to museums; as a result, cultural artifacts that ought to be stored in accordance with conservation requirements frequently end up being kept in poor storage conditions instead.
The rate at which new buildings are rising up out of the ground is unequalled anywhere else in the world. As far as the technical aspects of their design are concerned, they differ from standard practice in Germany in at least two major respects
Green or "living" roofs are no longer the preserve of the wealthy or the extravagant creations of modern architects looking to make their mark. Modern ecologists class them as settlement biotopes. They are stipulated in some land use plans as a counterbalance to paved surfaces – and in some parts of Germany they even attract public subsidies. As well as storing rainwater and improving the microclimate in cities, many green roofs are cultivated as rooftop gardens which provide an attractive contrast to surrounding buildings.