Increasing the Durability and Resilience of Tall Buildings with Precast Concrete Enclosure Systems

Increasing the Durability and Resilience of Tall Buildings with Precast Concrete Enclosure Systems

By Randy van Straaten, PEng, PhD, John Straube, PEng, PhD, and C. Alexander Lukachko, MArch Abstract: In this paper precast concrete wall systems are compared to curtain wall and window wall systems in terms of durability and disaster resilience of multi-story buildings. Window wall systems are currently the enclosure system of choice for tall residential […]

Measured and Predicted Moisture Performance of High-R Wall Assemblies in Cold Climates

Measured and Predicted Moisture Performance of High-R Wall Assemblies in Cold Climates

Trevor Trainor, MASc, Jonathan Smegal, MASc, and John Straube, PEng, PhD (RDH), and Anil Parekh (Natural Resources Canada) Abstract: The wall system is a key component of an energy-efficient building. Incremental increases in building enclosure insulation levels have resulted in reduced heat loss and space heating loads. However, there are challenges that arise, including changes […]

Moisture-Related Durability of In-Service High-R Wall Assemblies in Pacific Northwest Climates

Moisture-Related Durability of In-Service High-R Wall Assemblies in Pacific Northwest Climates

By Jonathan Smegal, MASc, Robert Lepage, PEng, MASc, and Chris Schumacher, MASc Abstract: The Passive House program is becoming increasingly well-known in North America. This program aims to produce a superior thermal enclosure such that the space conditioning systems may be minimized, if not appreciably eliminated. Many Passive House designs use double-stud or thick wall […]

High-Rise Wood Building Enclosures

High-Rise Wood Building Enclosures

By Graham Finch, MASc, PEng Abstract: Interest in the construction of taller mid- to high-rise wood structure buildings is growing in Canada and the United States, building off of the success of dozens of projects in Europe and Australia. High-rise wood buildings utilize cross-laminated timber (CLT) and nail-laminated timber (NLT) panels, glulam beams and columns, […]

Approach to Assessing Continuous Insulation Products

Approach to Assessing Continuous Insulation Products

By Jonathan Smegal, MASc (RDH), John Straube, PEng, PhD (RDH), Theresa Weston, PhD (DuPont), and Aaron Grin, MASc (RDH) Abstract: More rigorous energy codes and requirements for energy-efficient construction are spurring interest in new insulation products, specifically those that provide continuous exterior insulation. New exterior insulation products, especially those that have nontraditional forms, need to […]

Impact of Large Building Airtightness Requirements

Impact of Large Building Airtightness Requirements

By Lorne Ricketts, MASc, PEng Abstract: Air leakage into and out of buildings affects building durability, occupant comfort, indoor air quality, and energy consumption. Recently, in response to increasing societal concern regarding the environment and rising energy costs, building enclosure airtightness is garnering more attention. Various jurisdictions in North America and worldwide have implemented or […]

Critical Freeze/Thaw Saturation Measurement of In-Service Masonry

Critical Freeze/Thaw Saturation Measurement of In-Service Masonry

By Randy Van Straaten, PEng, Trevor Trainor, MASc, and Chris Schumacher MASc Abstract: When planning an insulation retrofit for an existing masonry building, it is important to analyze the freeze/thaw durability of the masonry units. The critical freeze/thaw saturation value is an important measure of durability, and frost dilatometry is an effective method of determining […]

Wind Washing Effects on Mineral Wool Insulated Sheathings

Wind Washing Effects on Mineral Wool Insulated Sheathings

By Randy Van Straaten, PEng, John Straube, PEng, PhD, and Trevor Trainor, MASc (RDH), and Antoine Habellion, MEng, MAS (ROXUL) Abstract: Wind washing is wind-driven air movement through or behind thermal insulation within enclosures. This bulk movement of air increases heat loss, resulting in increased energy consumption, risk of condensation on cooled surfaces, and increased […]

Inward Vapor Drives in Adhered Veneer Wall Assemblies with Continuous Exterior Insulation

Inward Vapor Drives in Adhered Veneer Wall Assemblies with Continuous Exterior Insulation

By Jonathan Smegal and Aaron Grin Abstract: Typical adhered veneer applications apply thin masonry units over a bed of lath-reinforced mortar over a sheathing membrane layer (often a single layer of building paper, felt, or housewrap). When used over wood- or steel-framed walls, numerous moisture problems and failures have been reported, in part due to […]

A Field Study of Airflow in Mid to High-Rise Multi-Unit Residential Buildings

A Field Study of Airflow in Mid to High-Rise Multi-Unit Residential Buildings

By Lorne Ricketts and John Straube Abstract: Airflow into, out of, and within buildings is a fundamental factor of building design and operation, as building airflow patterns impact occupant health and comfort, building durability, and energy consumption. The height, typical inclusion of operable windows, and compartmentalized nature of high-rise multi-unit residential buildings makes them both […]

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