Platform Characterization of walls

The LOCIE is interested in the characterization of the walls. This includes the thermal and hygroscopic properties of the materials but also the air transfers through the walls.

The RHBox is a double hygrothermal enclosure. It consists of 2 glove boxes connected by an airlock. Each of the chambers is independently regulated in temperature (between -5 and +40°C) and humidity (from 9% to 98% RH) by a heat exchanger and a cryothermostat as well as saturated salt solutions. The evolution of the moisture content of the material is monitored by weighing directly inside each of the chambers (continuous or discontinuous weighing, max: 600g). Thanks to this installation, the classic hygric characterisations of hygroscopic materials can be carried out (sorption isotherms, vapour permeability, etc.) but dynamic experiments are also possible thanks to the rapid passage of samples through the airlock. This allows the measurement of the moisture buffer value of the materials as well as the kinetics of sorption/desorption between 2 moisture levels. In addition to the actual characterisation of materials, the data obtained can then be used in modelling to predict phenomena or in inverse methods to determine the characteristics of a material from a much smaller number of experiments.


Concerning the study of air transfers through the wall. Experimental benches have been designed for this purpose. At the material scale, the SAPI box (Small Air Path Investigation box) is used to characterize on a small scale the air permeability of single materials or simple assemblies. The APIE box (Air Path In Envelopes box) was built for airtightness studies on larger walls (0.7 m x 2 m).








The LOCIE also has a C-THERM thermal conductivity meter for rapid measurement of the surface thermal conductivity of low conductivity materials.