Building physics

Building physics is one of the research fields within the subject of building technology. Our research consists of two main fields: Building energy simulation and life cycle modelling of energy, economy and environmental impact, as well as materials mechanics with a focus on the transport of moisture and heat in building materials.

Our research

Building energy simulation and life cycle modelling

Research in building energy simulation and life cycle modeling works with concepts, strategies and analysis tools to improve resource efficiency and environmental performance of buildings. The overall goal is to increase the understanding of strategies for achieving energy and climate goals in the construction sector.

Research in life cycle modeling examines energy use and environmental consequences during the life cycle of buildings. A life cycle perspective is needed to understand and analyze the energy and climate impact from buildings, material production, transport, construction, operation and maintenance as well as demolition, to understand connections and interactions between different phases in a building's life cycle. Research in building energy simulation deals with the application and development of models for technology economy and energy, for evaluation of heating and ventilation systems and a building's climate screen.

Examples of focus in these fields are the following.

  • Life cycle and carbon footprint analysis of construction systems
  • Economic analysis of energy efficiency and renovation measures
  • Multi-criterion optimization in building design and additional insulation of buildings
  • Advanced simulation of building energy and environmental performance
  • System analysis of heating and ventilation systems for buildings

Materials mechanics with a focus on moisture and heat transport in building materials

Research in transport processes in building materials is important, as it can improve the ability to build energy-efficient and long-lasting. Commonly occurring are, for example, moisture-related problems in concrete and wooden structures during the construction phase and during the use phase. Another important process included in our research is chemical decomposition of concrete related to moisture and ion transport processes, such as chloride-initiated reinforcement corrosion and carbonation.

Research is, or has been, conducted in the following areas:

  • Finite element simulation of ion transport in concrete
  • Moisture transport simulation taking into account hysteresis using two-phase models (water vapor and pore liquid) in wood and concrete
  • Measurement of moisture content and moisture transport in building materials using a number of different advanced laboratory techniques
  • Coupled reactive transport simulation in concrete using coupled finite element models and chemical equilibrium formulations, where the PHREEQC program is mainly used
  • Development and application of multiphase and more constituent continuum models for wood based on Hybrid Mixture Theory, HMT
  • Theoretical studies of coupled heat and moisture transport in connection with mechanics based on large deformations, where the use of HTM is central
  • Simulation and measurement of cleaning processes of materials using externally applied electric fields