The European Physical Journal Applied Physics

Instrumentation and Metrology

Determination of the thermophysical properties of evolutive porous media: application to Civil Engineering materials

P. Poullaina1, P. Mounangaa1, G. Bastiana1 and R. Couéa1

GeM, UMR CNRS 6183, Institut de Recherche en Génie Civil et Mécanique, IUT de Saint-Nazaire, Département Génie Civil, BP 420, 44606 Saint-Nazaire Cedex, France


The purpose of this paper is to describe the development and the use of two measurement techniques especially adapted to the rapid determination of the thermophysical properties of evolutive porous media. The first technique exploits the method of the “heated and non-heated wires” and is validated on wet clay by comparison with previous works [Mounanga et al., Eur. Phys. J. Appl. Phys. 26, 65 (2004)]. It is then used to quantify the evolution of both thermal conductivity and volumetric heat capacity of hardening cement pastes maintained at 294 ± 1 K. The second technique is based on the classical method of the “heating film” and a data treatment using forward calculation. This technique is first used to measure the properties of well-known materials (hardened mortars, wet sand [Mounanga et al., Eur. Phys. J. Appl. Phys. 26, 65 (2004); Delacre, Ph.D. thesis, University of Artois, 2000] and glass [Bastian, Rev. Phys. Appl. 22, 431 (1987)] and then applied to media whose properties evolve both over time and through space (drying sand).

(Received December 8 2004)

(Revised September 21 2005)

(Accepted September 29 2005)

(Online publication December 14 2005)


  • 65.60.+a – Thermal properties of amorphous solids and glasses: heat capacity, thermal expansion, etc.;
  • 44.30.+v – Heat flow in porous media;
  • 01.50.Kw – Techniques of testing