A model for moisture-content evolution in porous building elements: treatment of irregular regions

Regina Katsman, Rachel Becker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The effects of moisture movement and residual moisture content are becoming a recognized part of a performance based design of buildings. Despite the long-time existence of a basic 3-D formulation of heat and mass transfer within porous materials, the generalized hygrothermal behavior of construction elements that contain hygrothermal bridges and/or air voids has not been studied. Neither have the processes, which occur at the interfaces between different materials, been investigated. Relying on basic energy and mass conservation principles, a general integral form of presentation was applied to establish the coupled heat and mass transfer field equations, which were further transformed to a discrete set of algebraic equations. This form of presentation is more suitable for treatment of irregular regions, such as material interfaces and internal air voids. To treat these regions, specific mathematical procedures were implemented. Two Software packages were written to simulate the evolution of moisture content in non-homogeneous flat planar walls, without and with air voids. Finally, the results of modeling are presented for both types of constructions, thus enabling one to analyse a hygrothermal behavior of irregular wall's regions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationeSim proceedings: The Canadian conference on building energy simulation
PublisherIBPSA Publications
StatePublished - 2001


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