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Proposition de thèse à l'Université Gustave Eiffel

Humidity and heat transfers in bio-based buildings

Bio-based construction materials are systems containing or formed of vegetal particles, such as wood, hemp, cellulose, flax, cotton, etc., possibly linked with a mineral paste or an organic binder. They represent a promising solution for carbon emission reduction, due to their low production cost and their partial or full recyclability. Moreover, they bring more comfort to the occupants thanks to their moisture-buffering capacity, and they require less energy for heating or cooling. These qualities are obtained through exchanges between water vapor and “bound water”, i.e., water absorbed in the solid structure, combined with heat transfers. Consequently, understanding and predicting water and heat (hygrothermal) transfers in such materials is essential to selecting them appropriately, adjusting their conditions of use, and designing innovative materials. However, the current analysis of their performance is generally based on limited evaluations at a global scale or via macroscopic models lacking physical information.
The objective of this PhD work is to compare for the first time the effective behaviour of the building with the predictions of heat and mass transfers through the walls with the help of the detailed intrinsic properties of the materials. The candidate will thus have to carry out an experimental characterization of the materials with the above described tools, set up specific protocols for exploring the hygrothermal behaviour of the room, and use or develop a numerical simulation of this behaviour.

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