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​​​​​​​​​​D1.4: Analytical methods for building components​



Background / r​​ationale of the research

Designing by having an end performance in mind, is a great challenge for Architecture, Engineering and Construction industry (AEC). During the construction phase, the criteria established during the Design Phases should be met and building performance, such as Energy efficient Building, as outlined in the Construction Documents is validated through observations and testing (NIBS, 2012). The reason why the construction phase is critical for building performance is because of the sequence of the building process itself. Once foundation is realised and walls are placed, it is not possible to make improvements on the foundation any more. This is valid for every next step done during construction phase. During construction phase, there is no iteration planned to control for possible errors hence it is very difficult to improve errors at the later stage. This requires good quality check during construction phase and good communication flow between parties involved at different stages of construction process. 

The main goals of the research presented in this report are:

  • To define the critical building components with highest impacts on the quality and performance of energy-efficient buildings. 
  • To develop systematic procedures for self-instruction and self-inspection of building components based on analytical and quantifiable methods by using adequate measurement instruments. 
  • ​To analyse the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) measured in relation with building components in order to detect and prevent errors timely. 

There are several research questions that have been addressed in this deliverable: 

  • What are most critical building components and their critical impacts on energy performance?
  • What are the required preconditions necessary for reducing errors during construction process? 
  • What are the most common construction errors occurring during construction process related to critical building components? 
  • What are the most important KPIs measurement parameters that affect the energy performance?
  • How the INSITER methodology can help reduce the amount of errors during construction phase? 

​Main results and conclusions 

​​The most important result of the research presented in this report is: the description of analytical and quantifiable method for self-instruction and self-inspection of building envelopes (façade and roof) and ground floor and foundation. The main focus lies on the critical joints between different building components where errors and flaws during construction process usually take place, and these will cause a certain loss of performance of the whole building. Having analysed joints of different building components, the relevant KPIs measurement aspects and their relation to the most frequently made errors during the construction process, it became obvious that geometric accuracy and the ways that the joints and connecting elements are treated is the most crucial measurement aspect that affects all KPIs that are relevant for energy performance of the buildings. The tolerance boundaries that indicate to which extent an imperfection resulting from the production process compromises energy performance are also discussed. The deliverable subsequently determine which parameters need to be measured and therewith serve as the input for development of hardware tools, software tools and Building Information Modelling/Augmented Reality. This report also presents practical methods to ensure an efficient communication flow between the parties involved at different stages of construction process. The deliverable proposes, based on stakeholder analysis and by means of selfinspection, a clarification of responsibilities between the involved stakeholders / construction actors for detecting and preventing error during the construction process and at which stage.

More specific outcomes of the research presented in this deliverable are listed below: Addressing two main EU directives and related objectives: 

1) Energy Performance of Buildings Directive, EPBD and 

2) Energy Efficiency Directive, EED (Chapter 2)

​Definition of Critical Building Components of Energy Efficient Buildings for further analysis in relation to the most frequent construction errors (Chapter 2).​​

​Defines basic assumptions as a precondition for applying INSITER methodology and introduction of ‘joint’ approach for further development of the methodology for self-inspection (Chapter 2).

Defines Practical steps for self-inspection to measure the relevant parameters, including use of relevant measurement devices addressing the real problems on-site (Chapter 3 and 4).

​Selection of the main EU technical norms related to KPIs and parameters and implementing DIN 18202 for Geometric Conformity of Elements and/or NEN 3682 for laser scanning. This task is very important for the definition of the main EU standard used to evaluate the quality assurance during the assembly/construction phase (Chapter 3).

Development of a method to calculate KPIs based on measured parameters (Chapter 3).

Defines the stages where KPIs measurement parameters are relevant (Chapter 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7).

Relevant stakeholders have been identified having studied the most common errors related to assembly in order to determine the most effective communication and coordination procedure, and to clarify responsibilities and liabilities (Chapters 3, 4, 5,6, and 7).

Defining problem owners and communication flow in relation to relevant KPIs measurement aspects during construction process (Chapters 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7).

Defining prevention measures in relation to relevant KPIs and measurement aspects during construction process (Chapters 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7).

Defining practical steps for self-inspection to measure the relevant parameters, including use of relevant measurement devices (Chapters 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7).

​Further discussions and recommendations for follow-up research

In the follow-up research, detailed methods for evaluation and decision-making will be developed regarding the errors, focusing on the joint between two building components and establishing whether an observed error is really an error and therefore requires rework. The method will also regard the thresholds both at component or system level as well as whole building level considering the relevant quality and performance requirements. Next to this, the implementation guidelines will be developed for new construction projects and for refurbishment projects.​​​​


Ton Damen
DEMO Consultants B.V.
Delftechpark 10, 2628 XH Delft
The Netherlands
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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020
research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 636063.