Hygric properties of porous building materials (VI): a round robin campaign

Chi Feng*, Ana Sofia Guimarães, Nuno Ramos, Lixin Sun, Dariusz Gawin, Piotr Konca, Christopher Hall, Jianhua Zhao, Hauke Hirsch, John Grunewald, Maria Fredriksson, Kurt Kielsgaard Hansen, Zbyšek Pavlík, Hans Janssen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Hygric properties of porous building materials are important for hygrothermal analysis. Their experimental determination is however not always reliable, shown by the discrepant results from different laboratories on the same materials. In this study, a recent round robin campaign initiated by KU Leuven (Belgium) and participated in by eight institutes from different countries is reported. Ceramic brick was selected as the target material. The bulk density and open porosity from vacuum saturation tests, the capillary absorption coefficient and capillary moisture content from capillary absorption tests, and the vapor permeability from cup tests were measured. Results were analyzed statistically and compared with a previous round robin project, EC HAMSTAD. The reproducibility errors for determining the capillary absorption coefficient were noticeably reduced when compared with the EC HAMSTAD project, and the different laboratories in the present study obtained similar results from vacuum saturation tests and capillary absorption tests without a common protocol. For cup tests, large inter-laboratory discrepancies still exist. However, with a stringent common protocol different laboratories achieved consistent results. For all properties a common protocol did not change the average results of all laboratories.
Original languageEnglish
Article number107242
JournalBuilding and Environment
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Porous building material,
  • Hygric property
  • Vacuum saturation
  • Capillary absorption
  • Vapor diffusion
  • Round robin
  • Common protocol

Cite this

Feng, C., Guimarães, A. S., Ramos, N., Sun, L., Gawin, D., Konca, P., Hall, C., Zhao, J., Hirsch, H., Grunewald, J., Fredriksson, M., Hansen, K. K., Pavlík, Z., & Janssen, H. (2020). Hygric properties of porous building materials (VI): a round robin campaign. Building and Environment, 185, [107242]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.buildenv.2020.107242