Using transient plane source sensor for determination of thermal properties of vacuum insulation panels
Journal article, 2012

The energy use in buildings has to be decreased to reach the targets and regulations in the European Union. One way of reducing the energy demand is to use vacuum insulation panels (VIP) in the building envelope. To make sure the declared thermal properties of the VIP are valid for the mounted panels, in situ measurements are needed. The transient plane source (TPS) method allows fast measurement of the thermal properties of a variety of materials. However, the large anisotropy of the VIP makes it hard to interpret the temperature increase in the TPS sensor. This paper presents a comparison between an analytical solution, numerical simulations and TPS measurements of polystyrene and polystyrene with aluminum film. Polystyrene and aluminum were used instead of VIP to increase the number of setups. The numerical simulation model was validated by comparing the simulated temperature increase with an analytical solution for the polystyrene sample. The simulated temperature increase in the polystyrene sample after 40 s was 7.8% higher than the TPS measurements. For the case with polystyrene with aluminum film, the deviation was 5.7%. Losses in the wires of the TPS sensor, uncertainties regarding the material parameters and surface resistances could explain the deviations.

Analytical solution


Numerical simulation

Transient plane source

Vacuum insulation panel

Thermal properties


Pär Johansson

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Building Technology

Bijan Adl-Zarrabi

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Building Technology

Carl-Eric Hagentoft

Chalmers, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Building Technology

Frontiers of Architectural Research

2095-2635 (eISSN)

Vol. 1 4 334-340

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Areas of Advance

Building Futures (2010-2018)


Subject Categories

Building Technologies



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