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Hygrothermal simulation of cathedral ceiling roofs with ventilated roofing tiles

Philipp Kölsch (Hygrothermics, Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics (IBP), Valley, Germany)

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation

ISSN: 2398-4708

Article publication date: 30 April 2019

Issue publication date: 31 July 2019




The surface temperature of the sub-roof beneath the ventilation layer and the tiles is one of the most important factors for the hygrothermal performance of pitched roofs. The air layer between tiles and sub-roof and the air exchange with the outdoor air influence the heat transfer and therefore affect the moisture level inside the roof construction. The paper aims to discuss these issues.


This paper provides the results of a research project performed at Fraunhofer-Institute for Building Physics, based on field test results. The investigations analyze the thermal behavior of different vented and ventilated roof constructions.


It was found that for a detailed model with roof cladding and ventilated air layer normally too many parameters are unknown. For that reason a simplified approach was set up, especially to consider the radiation exchange between the tiles and the underlay as well as the effects of the ventilation.


Now, effective surface transfer parameters can substitute both cladding and air layer in the simulation, while the approach still provides a high accordance with the measured values. The paper provides characteristic values for different roofing situations to simulate ventilated roofs by means of hygrothermal simulation in a simplified way.



This contribution was funded by the German “Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Energie” according to a decision of the German Federal Parliament.


Kölsch, P. (2019), "Hygrothermal simulation of cathedral ceiling roofs with ventilated roofing tiles", International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, Vol. 37 No. 4, pp. 473-487.



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