Hygrothermal analysis of historic buildings: Statistical methodologies and their applicability in temperate climates

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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to verify the applicability and efficiency of two statistical methods to obtain sustainable targets of temperature and relative humidity in historic buildings located in temperate climates. Design/methodology/approach – The data recorded along one year in a non-heated historic building in Lisbon (Portugal) was analysed with the two methodologies, EN 15757 and FCT-UNL. To evaluate their adequacy it was calculated the performance index for each target and it was verified the mechanical and biological degradation risks. Findings – While the use of the two approaches is suitable for temperate climates, there is a higher efficiency of the FCT-UNL methodology, allowing a better response for the three parameters in evaluation. Research limitations/implications – Despite the better results obtained, the FCT-UNL methodology was only tested for one city; therefore the application to other situations may be required to obtain more robust conclusions. Practical implications – The effectiveness of the FCT-UNL methodology to obtain sustainable climate targets can lead to important energy conservation in historic buildings and to contribute for the change of old approaches in the preventive conservation area. Originality/value – This paper provides a comparison between two recent methods. The results can lead to some advances in the science of preventive conservation, interesting to conservators and building physic scientists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-23
Number of pages12
JournalStructural Survey
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Apr 2016


  • Cultural heritage
  • EN 15757
  • FCT-UNL methodology
  • Historic buildings
  • Microclimate
  • Preventive conservation


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