Area of Application: Materials and Substances
Product Types: Temperature and Climatic Test Chamber, S!MPATI Control Software
The Lafarge Roofing Technical Centre in Crawley, West Sussex, United Kingdom, carries out service life assessments of new and innovative roofing products before launch onto the market. These assessments support Lafarge's roof system guarantees for long-term performance. Weiss Technik UK installed a customised test chamber with a volume of 10m3 with the following specification:
- Temperature range from -20°C to +80°C
- Climatic working range from +10°C to +80°C
- Humidity range from 15%RH to 80%RH
- Solar simulation via two banks of 37 lamps in specially designed housings
- Water spray to simulate rain and acid rain. Special design to washdown walls after each acid rain test to preserve test chamber
- Rack and trolley - specially designed specimen holder rack for roof tiles. Guidance system to ensure trolley is positioned same place for each test
- Chamber controlled via S!MPATI software
Test programmes involve intensive accelerated laboratory weathering in parallel with real life natural weathering in diverse climates, such as acid rain for example - using the Lafarge Roofing network of worldwide weathering sites.
Test cycles are chosen to reflect all elements of outdoor weathering in a controlled climatic chamber. The aim of the accelerated testing is to closely reproduce the effects of real life weathering on building products in as short a timescale as possible, under repeatable laboratory conditions.
What began as an ambitious development turned out to be a successful new addition to the range of durability tests carried out by Lafarge Roofing.