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Title: Building America Case Study: Cold Climate Foundation Wall Hygrothermal Research Facility, Cloquet, Minnesota (Fact Sheet)

Abstract

This report focuses on the progress made to date and the technical details of the experiment. An overview of the experimental data being collected with some interesting highlights noted thus far is also provided. A full analysis of the experimental data and the drawing of conclusions with regard to the thermal and hygrothermal performance of the retrofit foundation insulation systems tested will only be possible after a full year of data has been collected in 2014.

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Building Technologies Office
OSTI Identifier:
1156980
Report Number(s):
DOE/GO-102014-4441
KNDJ-0-40338-00
DOE Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Relation:
Related Information: Technology Solutions for New and Existing Homes, Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; RESIDENTIAL; RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS; NORTHERNSTAR; BUILDING AMERICA; BASEMENT FOUNDATION INSULATION; WSP; BUILDING FOUNDATIONS; HYGROTHERMAL; THERMAL

Citation Formats

NorthernSTAR. Building America Case Study: Cold Climate Foundation Wall Hygrothermal Research Facility, Cloquet, Minnesota (Fact Sheet). United States: N. p., 2014. Web.
NorthernSTAR. Building America Case Study: Cold Climate Foundation Wall Hygrothermal Research Facility, Cloquet, Minnesota (Fact Sheet). United States.
NorthernSTAR. Mon . "Building America Case Study: Cold Climate Foundation Wall Hygrothermal Research Facility, Cloquet, Minnesota (Fact Sheet)". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1156980.
@article{osti_1156980,
title = {Building America Case Study: Cold Climate Foundation Wall Hygrothermal Research Facility, Cloquet, Minnesota (Fact Sheet)},
author = {NorthernSTAR},
abstractNote = {This report focuses on the progress made to date and the technical details of the experiment. An overview of the experimental data being collected with some interesting highlights noted thus far is also provided. A full analysis of the experimental data and the drawing of conclusions with regard to the thermal and hygrothermal performance of the retrofit foundation insulation systems tested will only be possible after a full year of data has been collected in 2014.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Sep 01 00:00:00 EDT 2014},
month = {Mon Sep 01 00:00:00 EDT 2014}
}
  • This case study describes the University of Minnesota’s Cloquet Residential Research Facility (CRRF) in northern Minnesota, which features more than 2,500 ft2 of below-grade space for building systems foundation hygrothermal research. Here, the NorthernSTAR Building America Partnership team researches ways to improve the energy efficiency of the building envelope, including wall assemblies, basements, roofs, insulation, and air leakage.
  • This project was funded jointly by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). ORNL focused on developing a full basement wall system experimental database to enable others to validate hygrothermal simulation codes. NREL focused on testing the moisture durability of practical basement wall interior insulation retrofit solutions for cold climates. The project has produced a physically credible and reliable long-term hygrothermal performance database for retrofit foundation wall insulation systems in zone 6 and 7 climates that are fully compliant with the performance criteria in the 2009 Minnesota Energy Code. These data currently span the periodmore » from November 10, 2012 through May 31, 2014 and are anticipated to be extended through November 2014. The experimental data were configured into a standard format that can be published online and that is compatible with standard commercially available spreadsheet and database software.« less
  • Thermal and moisture problems in existing basements create a unique challenge because the exterior face of the wall is not easily or inexpensively accessible. This approach addresses thermal and moisture management from the interior face of the wall without disturbing the exterior soil and landscaping. the interior and exterior environments. This approach has the potential for improving durability, comfort, and indoor air quality. This project was funded jointly by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). ORNL focused on developing a full basement wall system experimental database to enable others to validate hygrothermal simulation codes.more » NREL focused on testing the moisture durability of practical basement wall interior insulation retrofit solutions for cold climates. The project has produced a physically credible and reliable long-term hygrothermal performance database for retrofit foundation wall insulation systems in zone 6 and 7 climates that are fully compliant with the performance criteria in the 2009 Minnesota Energy Code. The experimental data were configured into a standard format that can be published online and that is compatible with standard commercially available spreadsheet and database software.« less
  • Building science research supports installing exterior (soil side) foundation insulation as the optimal method to enhance the hygrothermal performance of new homes. With exterior foundation insulation, water management strategies are maximized while insulating the basement space and ensuring a more even temperature at the foundation wall. However, such an approach can be very costly and disruptive when applied to an existing home, requiring deep excavation around the entire house. The NorthernSTAR Building America Partnership team implemented an innovative, minimally invasive foundation insulation upgrade technique on an existing home. The approach consisted of using hydrovac excavation technology combined with a liquidmore » insulating foam. The team was able to excavate a continuous 4" wide by 4' to 5' deep trench around the entire house, 128 linear feet, except for one small part under the stoop that was obstructed with concrete debris. The combination pressure washer and vacuum extraction technology also enabled the elimination of large trenches and soil stockpiles normally produced by backhoe excavation. The resulting trench was filled with liquid insulating foam, which also served as a water-control layer of the assembly. The insulation was brought above grade using a liquid foam/rigid foam hybrid system and terminated at the top of the rim joist. Cost savings over the traditional excavation process ranged from 23% to 50%. The excavationless process could result in even greater savings since replacement of building structures, exterior features, utility meters, and landscaping would be minimal or non-existent in an excavationless process.« less