Within BERTIM project a series of tests were conducted in order to validate a new type envelope made of timber and other secondary materials that made up the envelope of this panelised energy efficient upgrading system. Testing of the prototype in a real infrastructure was key element for measuring and validating the performance of these panels and to making steps ahead on the final configuration of the system.
The assembly and installation of BERTIM modules were conducted at TECNALIA´s full scale experimental facility KUBIK, while the manufacturing of the modules and its components were fabricated at EGOIN´ premises, both located in Basque Country, Spain.
Two different 2D envelopes modules were tested in KUBIK: on one hand modules with embedded installations, and other hand panels without installation.
The existing façade is a typical Spanish construction from the 70’s, that consists of a cavity wall, being formed by a external brick layer, air cavity and a internal brick layer, having existing build-up a U-value of 1,6-W/(m2K). This was considerably improved during the tests once the system was finally installed.
The conditions that assembled wall panels had to face during the test were intended to be represented as conditions of an actual building, not of a controlled laboratory situation.
In both type of panels described above, a Rockwall insulation layer of variable thickness and density was used, being inserted within a timbre frame structure covered with OSB panels internally (in the case of panels without services), CLT panels (in the case of panels with services included within the build-ups) and waterproof layers externally on both cases. In the case of the panels with services the total section of the panels was increased to allow for more space for the pipes running along the panels and an extra insulation was required also to cover them properly. Finally, the finish of the panels implemented in KUBIK were made of wooden slats supported by battens which were fixed to the panel studs.
In the case of panels including services, removable covers were designed for accessing the critical points of the services in order to proceed with common maintenance operations. In addition to the above, other removable covers were horizontally placed where the installation panels were joined aimed at assembling the services after both panels were placed.
The implementation of the system allowed the design team to analyse the materials or details that underperformed in terms of speed of installation and thermal efficiency. These are being corrected now in pursuit of a final upgrading system that the team believes will achieve its economic and technical goals, which are at the end the features that will define the feasibility of the product that could come out from this collaboration.