Hygrothermal performance of log walls in a building of 18th century and prediction of climate change impact on biological deterioration
Several studies underline the dramatic changes that are expected to take place in nature and environment due to climate change. The latter is also expected to affect the built environment. Particular emphasis is currently given to the impact of climate change on historical structures. Within this context, it is important to use simple methods and novel tools in order to investigate pecific case studies. In this study, the climate change impact on the hygrothermal performance of the log walls in a historic timber building is presented. The building under investigation is the Fadum storehouse, also known as ‘the coated house’, located in Tønsberg, Norway. The storehouse dates to the late 18th century. It has a particular design with the main features of stumps or piles up to which it stands and the ‘coating’ that covers its outer walls. The main damage of the construction is related to the biological degradation of the wood. The hygrothermal performance of the log walls, as well as the exterior and interior climate, have been monitored and the results have been used to validate a Heat, Air and Moisture transport (HAM) model. The validated HAM model is then used to examine the performance of the log walls for both current and potential future climate conditions. The transient hygrothermal boundary conditions serve as the input parameters to a biohygrothermal model that is used to investigate the biological deterioration of the building components. The findings reveal that currently there is no mould risk for the main body of the construction, which is in accordance with the visual inspection. The passive systems of the building are highly conducive to these results, since they protect it from driving rain and other sources of moisture and eliminate the potential impact of future climate change risk scenarios.