Building Science

CCHRC works with industry to test residential building techniques and products in the extreme climates of Alaska. Specific research focus areas include thermal performance and moisture control in the building envelope, and the thermal interactions between foundations and frozen ground. Our building science research capabilities include both physical testing under laboratory and field conditions, and simulation methods for evaluating building products and assemblies.

Find a full list of Building Science projects here.

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Projects

Designs for Rural Alaska Walls CCHRC has used spray polyurethane foam insulation to build affordable de
Structural Insulated Panels Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) are prefabricated building materials used in residential construction in Alaska. This project prepared resources for homeowners who want to learn about SIPs, where they are used in cold climates, and considerations for Alaska.
Safe Effective Affordable Retrofits Testing a new batch of wall systems that can provide affordable retrofit options.
Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERVs) in Cold Climates Energy Recovery Ventilators (ERVs) are whole house ventilation systems that exchange stale indoor air with fresh outside air, recovering both heat and moisture from the indoor air to save energy. They could help improve indoor air quality in a cold dry climate like Interior Alaska.
Thermal Mass Study Thermal mass is the ability of a material to absorb and store heat energy, which can be useful when it comes to cold climate housing. This project clarifies the role of thermal mass in housing and includes a literature review and energy modeling with IDA Indoor Climate and Energy (ICE) software.