Thermal and radiation properties

Thermal and radiation characteristics
© Fraunhofer IBP
The Fraunhofer IBP also determines heat and radiation parameters.

Comprehensive testing of building materials and building systems


In addition to methods for determining mechanical, thermal and moisture properties, our test laboratory also uses integral methods to assess radiation characteristics. Various sun simulation devices are available for evaluating the usability of components exposed to radiation.

Windows and façades

The "Thermal and Radiation Characteristics" area functions as a test center for windows and doors (DIN EN 14351) and façades (DIN EN 13830) and is recognized both as a European (notified body 1004) and as a national test center (BWU 10). Here, the scientists calculate and measure the thermal properties of windows - for example heat transfer coefficients (U values) - as well as air permeability, the ability to withstand driving rain, wind resistance and radiation characteristics. Acoustic properties can also be determined. Special climate simulators and the WUFI® simulation program are also available if condensation problems require investigation.

Insulating materials

Fraunhofer IBP is also recognized as a European testing and certification body (notified body 1004) and as a national testing body (BWU 10) for insulating materials. Our experts carry out tests on new insulation materials for both national approvals (German Institute for Building Technology) and European Technical Approvals (ETA). We also work on behalf of various insulating material manufacturers, monitoring company in-house production controls as an external body.

The test spectrum includes:

  • Thermal conductivity tests in the temperature range between -150°C and 250°C
  • Compressive stress measurements
  • Thickness under load
  • Underwater storage
  • Freeze-thaw cycle tests
  • Deformation under varying climatic conditions
  • Durability tests
  • On-site tests
  • Environmental compatibility tests.

Both panel-shaped insulating materials as well as pipe insulating materials, homogeneous and multi-layer infrared insulating materials are investigated.

Components and systems

Among others, we apply the following methods to test components and systems:

  • Hygrothermal investigations
  • Function tests
  • Impermeability tests
  • Durability studies under stable and fluctuating climatic conditions (day-night or summer-winter climatic changes)

In addition, our experts check aspects such as:

  • Response of components to sunlight and rain
  • Ventilation properties of air-permeable components under different pressure conditions
  • Capacity of components to store heat and moisture
  • Formation of condensation on surfaces and in interstitial spaces
  • Drying properties
  • Effect of thermal bridges