The use of multi-layer walls with high thermal resistance values is widely used to reduce heat losses in buildings during wintertime. Nevertheless, it is extremely important to treat also weaker components of the envelope such as doors, windows and all the various thermal bridges, otherwise the efforts in increasing walls thermal resistance can be vanished. If the improvement of the thermal performance of windows and doors has reached a significant development and a high level of standardization, the same is not true for the corrections related to thermal bridges, which therefore require a specific analysis in the design phase. Thermal bridges, of whatever nature, are therefore a crucial point in the energy analysis of the building envelope. The analysis on existing constructions can be performed on site with thermographic techniques that describe in first approximation the qualitative energy performance of the building and put in evidence the main heat losses. The paper proposes a methodology to perform a quantitative analysis of some types of thermal bridges, through simple thermographic surveys and subsequent analytical processing. From the simple measurement of the air temperature and the analysis of the thermogram, the thermal bridge effect can be estimated as a percentage increase of the homogenous wall thermal transmittance. This term is obtained without further information on the structure of both the thermal bridge and the stratigraphy of the wall. The analytical methodology – which was validated with experimental and numerical analyses – is described and the results of surveys on different types of thermal bridges are reported. This method represents a quick and effective tool to define the actual heat loss of high-insulation buildings and to evaluate the benefits in treating thermal bridges.

A quantitative methodology to evaluate thermal bridges in buildings

ASDRUBALI, Francesco;BALDINELLI, Giorgio;BIANCHI, FRANCESCO
2012

Abstract

The use of multi-layer walls with high thermal resistance values is widely used to reduce heat losses in buildings during wintertime. Nevertheless, it is extremely important to treat also weaker components of the envelope such as doors, windows and all the various thermal bridges, otherwise the efforts in increasing walls thermal resistance can be vanished. If the improvement of the thermal performance of windows and doors has reached a significant development and a high level of standardization, the same is not true for the corrections related to thermal bridges, which therefore require a specific analysis in the design phase. Thermal bridges, of whatever nature, are therefore a crucial point in the energy analysis of the building envelope. The analysis on existing constructions can be performed on site with thermographic techniques that describe in first approximation the qualitative energy performance of the building and put in evidence the main heat losses. The paper proposes a methodology to perform a quantitative analysis of some types of thermal bridges, through simple thermographic surveys and subsequent analytical processing. From the simple measurement of the air temperature and the analysis of the thermogram, the thermal bridge effect can be estimated as a percentage increase of the homogenous wall thermal transmittance. This term is obtained without further information on the structure of both the thermal bridge and the stratigraphy of the wall. The analytical methodology – which was validated with experimental and numerical analyses – is described and the results of surveys on different types of thermal bridges are reported. This method represents a quick and effective tool to define the actual heat loss of high-insulation buildings and to evaluate the benefits in treating thermal bridges.
2012
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11391/910362
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