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    Author(s): Samuel V. Glass; Anton TenWolde; Samuel L. Zelinka
    Date: 2013
    Source: Wood Design Focus, Volume 23, Number 3; Fall Issue 2013; pp 18-25.
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Forest Products Laboratory
    PDF: Download Publication  (590.67 KB)


    Is it possible to gauge the risk of moisture problems while designing the building envelope? This article provides a brief introduction to computer-based hygrothermal (heat and moisture) simulation, shows how simulation can be useful as a design tool, and points out a number of im-portant considerations regarding model inputs and limita-tions. Hygrothermal simulation allows a designer to pre-dict the moisture and temperature conditions that might occur within a building envelope assembly over time. This type of analysis can improve the understanding of how the building envelope responds to the interior and exterior environment and can help identify potential moisture per-formance problems. The article briefly discusses the rela-tionship between hygrothermal simulations and ASHRAE Standard 160-2009, Criteria for Moisture-Control Design Analysis in Buildings (ASHRAE 2009). The article con-cludes with simulation examples using wood-frame con-struction and cross-laminated timber construction to demonstrate the usefulness of hygrothermal analysis in the design of wood buildings.

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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Glass, Samuel V.; TenWolde, Anton; Zelinka, Samuel L. 2013. Hygrothermal Simulation: A Tool for Building Envelope Design Analysis. Wood Design Focus, Volume 23, Number 3; Fall Issue 2013; pp 18-25.


    hygrothermal analysis, simulation, moisture performance, building envelope, building enclosure, moisture control, design loads

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