The Building Physics and Construction Technology Laboratory (LFTC) is a unit of the Civil Engineering Department (http://www.civil.uminho.pt/lftc/) and of the Territory, Environment and Construction Center. The LFTC undertakes multidisciplinary research to develop, improve, demonstrate and evaluate sustainable and energy efficient building design, construction materials and solutions for building construction and renovation. LFTC also offers highly specialized consulting, among others, in the domains of acoustics, room acoustics, energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality, ventilation and non-structural rehabilitation.
LFTC research areas include the development of sustainable, innovative and more suitable construction products and solutions; Development of systems to support the assessment and recognition of sustainable building, including life-cycle analysis (LCA) of building performance, LCA of construction products and environmental product declaration (EPD); Promote renovation, re-use and rehabilitation of existing buildings towards new European Union targets; Development of strategies and technologies towards the EU 20-20-20 targets including the development of technologies towards the nearly-zero emissions buildings; Design for Climate Change and for future demounting and reuse of elements and materials; Assessment and prediction of the Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) of buildings, including assessment methods for monitoring IEQ and models to predict and optimize IEQ; Promote environmental expertise and technology, enlightened as competitive factors; Integration of passive and active solar systems in new and refurbished buildings; Comfort and energy efficiency in constructions; Higrothermal behaviour of buildings; Indoor air quality; Lighting behaviour of buildings; Eco-efficient construction materials; Evaluation of construction solutions performance; Infrared thermal imaging; Thermal and acoustic performance of buildings.
Some of the most relevant equipment available in LFTC for research and teaching are: microclimate analyser; frequency analyser for real-time analysis; equipment for building and environmental acoustics (sound level meters, sound source, tapping machine); equipment for indoor air quality testing (carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, ozone, formaldehyde, organic volatile compounds, suspended particles and radon meters); blower door; infrared camera; testing daylight and artificial lighting systems (luminance and illuminance meters); determination of thermal resistance of building systems (data‑loggers, flux meters, thermocouples); weather stations; thermo-acoustic chamber testing; multifunctional building test cells.