Myths of Insulating Old Masonry Buildings

Myths of Insulating Old Masonry Buildings

Myths of Insulating Old Masonry Buildings Who says science can’t be fun? At our monthly LAB Events, we strive to share our enthusiasm for building science by mixing research and field observations with a casual, conversational approach. At our March LAB Event, Randy Van Straaten used the idea of “masonry myths” to touch on some […]

Uses and Abuses of Standard Tests in Quality Assurance

Uses and Abuses of Standard Tests in Quality Assurance

Uses and Abuses of Standard Tests in Quality Assurance In the age of Wikipedia and social media, there is rarely a lack of information; what is more often needed is critical thinking. At our most recent LAB Event, John Straube demonstrated this truism in a discussion of Quality Assurance (QA), Quality Control (QC), and the […]

Extreme Durability – Helping Buildings Last 100+ Years

Extreme Durability – Helping Buildings Last 100+ Years

Extreme Durability – Helping Buildings Last 100+ Years Durability is often thought of in terms of how long a material will last, but buildings are more than the materials they’re made from. As John Straube discussed in his presentation on “Extreme Durability” at our January LAB Event, how long a building lasts depends on how […]

Gifts Not to Give a Building Scientist

Gifts Not to Give a Building Scientist

Gifts Not to Give a Building Scientist By Randy Van Straaten We have all received stuff for Christmas, and other celebrations, which wasn’t appreciated. There is a special set of items which aren’t going to please the building scientist in your life. We decided to just come out and tell you what we don’t want […]

New Papers from Buildings XIII

New Papers from Buildings XIII

New Papers from Buildings XIII This week marked the 13th Thermal Performance of the Exterior Envelopes of Whole Buildings XIII International Conference. From December 4-8, building science researchers and practitioners from around the world gathered in Clearwater, Florida to share their knowledge and ideas. RDH is proud to have several of our researchers among the […]

Exterior Insulation, Vapor Permeance and Durability

Exterior Insulation, Vapor Permeance and Durability

Exterior Insulation, Vapor Permeance and Durability Understanding how moisture moves through assemblies is one of the fundamental tasks of building science. At our October LAB Event, Jonathan Smegal looked specifically at how water vapor moves through wall assemblies with exterior insulation. Does the vapor permeance of the exterior insulation matter? If so, when and why? […]

Wind Loads on Vented Cladding

Wind Loads on Vented Cladding

Wind Loads on Vented Cladding In September, our monthly LAB Event featured RDH’s Randy Van Straaten sharing his research at Western University. This research focuses on pressure equalization of vented cladding systems, specifically on structural wind loads. Randy started out by covering some fundamental concepts. As he explained, pressure equalization got its name from the […]

Improving Performance in Multi-Unit Residential Buildings

Improving Performance in Multi-Unit Residential Buildings

Improving Performance in Multi-Unit Residential Buildings In August, our monthly LAB Event focused on multi-unit residential buildings – or as they say in the States, multifamily housing. As we learned from Dr. Straube, multis can achieve higher levels of performance, but they do have some unique design considerations compared to single-family houses. First, there’s the […]

A New Model for Assessing Mold Growth Risk

A New Model for Assessing Mold Growth Risk

A New Model for Assessing Mold Growth Risk In July, we hosted our annual summer LAB Event with a “humidity” theme. The main presentation, by Chris Schumacher, discussed how relative humidity is used in assessments of mold risk, described three different criteria for predicting mold growth, and looked at how those criteria match up to […]

Airtightness Testing in Large Buildings: More Than Just a Big House

Airtightness Testing in Large Buildings: More Than Just a Big House

Airtightness Testing in Large Buildings: More Than Just a Big House As any building scientist will tell you, airflow through the enclosure is a critical aspect of performance. It can affect energy use, durability, indoor air quality – basically, all the big topics that we like to talk about (here is an example focused on […]

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