The rate of thermal transmittance through individual building elements contributes significantly to the overall energy efficiency of a building. The lower the U-value of an element of a building’s fabric, the more slowly heat is able to transmit through it, and so the better it performs as an insulator.
Regardless of the construction method used, the in-situ U-value of a floor, wall or roof element can vary significantly from a calculated value. Influencing factors include inhomogeneous materials, variations in the level of moisture content of materials, exposure of an element to wind and rain, inconsistencies in building practices and workmanship and also inaccuracies embedded in material libraries used for running calculations.
Working with number of leading research organisations and innovators, Build Test Solutions is presently developing and evaluating a number of new technologies that will make the measurement of an in-situ U-value as easy and as cost effective as running a visual inspection and calculation.
The benefits of making the direct measurement of in-situ U-values more accessible include:
- Understand baseline performance and better target investment in insulation upgrades
- Measure during works and on early completions to check that desired outcomes are being achieved
- Quantify delivered actual performance, stating the true energy, running cost, CO2 savings and fuel poverty impact delivered by energy efficiency programmes
- Conduct quality assurance testing and establish a culture of accountability
- Save time, costs and improve quality by identifying issues early and reducing late-stage remedial action
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Our Rapid U-value solutions are currently under development and undergoing extensive testing and evaluation. The BTS team are however always on the lookout for parties interested in participating in our trials or exploring early stage options for integration. A full commercial product is expected in 2020.