Minimization of thermal insulation thickness taking into account condensation on external walls

Yamankaradeniz N.

ADVANCES IN MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, vol.7, no.9, 2015 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 7 Issue: 9
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/1687814015604803
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Keywords: External building wall, condensation, thermal insulation, optimization, BUILDING WALLS, OPTIMUM, TURKEY, HOT, RESPECT, ZONES, ROOF
  • Bursa Uludag University Affiliated: Yes


Condensation occurs in the inner layers of construction materials at whatever point the partial pressure of water vapor diffuses and reaches its saturation pressure. Condensation, also called sweating, damages materials, reduces thermal resistance, and by increasing the total heat transfer coefficient, results in unwanted events such as increased heat loss. This study applied minimization of thermal insulation thickness with consideration given to condensation in the external walls. The calculations of heat and mass transfers in the structure elements are expressed in a graphical form. While there was an increase in the required thermal insulation thickness subsequent to an increase in the internal environment's temperature, relative humidity, and the external environment's relative humidity, the required thickness decreased with an increase in the external environment's temperature. The amount of water vapor transferred varied with internal or external conditions and the thickness of the insulation. A change in the vapor diffusion resistance of the insulation material can increase the risk of condensation on the internal or external surfaces of the insulation.