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Coupled transient heat and moisture transfer investigation of facade panel connections

Bahram Abediniangerabi (Department of Civil Engineering, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA)
Mohsen Shahandashti (Department of Civil Engineering, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA)
Atefe Makhmalbaf (The College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA)

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology

ISSN: 1726-0531

Article publication date: 30 October 2020

Issue publication date: 7 June 2021

101

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the effect of panel connections on the hygrothermal performance of facade panels using a coupled, transient heat and moisture transfer analysis.

Design/methodology/approach

A coupled, transient heat and moisture transfer analysis has been conducted to investigate the effect of panel connections in the hygrothermal behavior of facade panels. Governing partial differential equations for the coupled heat and moisture transfer were formulated. Four panel connections proposed by pre-cast/pre-stressed concrete institute were modeled for the ultra-high performance fiber-reinforced concrete facade panel as illustrations and a finite element method was used to solve the numerical models.

Findings

The results of heat transfer analysis showed that steel connections could significantly reduce the thermal resistivity of facade panels by converging heat fluxes and acting as thermal bridges within facade panels. The results also showed that the maximum heat flux in the steel connector of the panel to foundation connection was 10 times higher compared to the other connections. Also, the results of moisture transfer showed that air gaps between the panels had higher moisture flux compared to the other layers in the models. The results show the significant importance of panel connections in the energy performance analysis of facade systems. They also highlight the importance of devising novel connection designs and materials that consider the transient, coupled heat and moisture transfer in the connections to effectively exploit the potential opportunities provided by innovative facade systems to improve building energy efficiency.

Originality/value

This paper, for the first time, investigates the effect of panel connections in the hygrothermal performance of building facade systems using a coupled, transient heat and moisture transfer analysis.

Keywords

Citation

Abediniangerabi, B., Shahandashti, M. and Makhmalbaf, A. (2021), "Coupled transient heat and moisture transfer investigation of facade panel connections", Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, Vol. 19 No. 3, pp. 758-777. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEDT-04-2020-0113

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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