Daily and seasonal thermal stresses in tilings: a field survey combined with numeric modeling

Zurbriggen, R.; Herwegh, Marco (2015). Daily and seasonal thermal stresses in tilings: a field survey combined with numeric modeling. Materials and Structures, 49(5), pp. 1917-1933. Springer 10.1617/s11527-015-0623-5

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This study investigates thermally induced tensile stresses in ceramic tilings. Daily and seasonal thermal cycles, as well as, rare but extreme events, such as a hail-storm striking a heated terrace tiling, were studied in the field and by numerical modeling investigations. The field surveys delivered temperature– time diagrams and temperature profiles across tiling systems. These data were taken as input parameters for modeling the stress distribution in the tiling system in order to detect potential sites for material failure. Dependent on the thermal scenario (e.g., slow heating of the entire structure during morning and afternoon, or a rapid cooling of the tiles by a rain storm) the modeling indicates specific locations with high tensile stresses. Typically regions along the rim of the tiling field showed stresses, which can become critical with respect to the adhesion strength. Over the years, ongoing cycles of thermal expansion–contraction result in material fatigue promoting the propagation of cracks. However, the installation of flexible waterproofing membranes (applied between substrate and tile adhesive) represents an efficient technical innovation to reduce such crack propagation as confirmed by both numerical modeling results and microstructural studies on real systems.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences
08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geological Sciences > Tectonics

UniBE Contributor:

Herwegh, Marco


500 Science > 550 Earth sciences & geology








Marco Herwegh

Date Deposited:

05 Aug 2015 10:28

Last Modified:

26 Jun 2016 02:06

Publisher DOI:






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