The cells are designed to efficiently test the thermal performance of a range of construction options while ensuring that the results are directly comparable to similar testing being conducted in other parts of the country.
The general arrangement is:
- Test Cell 1: Unenclosed timber framed subfloor with a light weight plywood clad wall and truss roof with sheet metal roof sheet
- Test Cell 2: Timber framed subfloor, with brick veneer walls, and truss roof with sheet metal roof sheet.
- Test Cell 3: Standard slab on ground with brick veneer walls, and truss roof with sheet metal roof sheet.
As similar test cells at Newcastle University are 6.0 m x 6.0 m externally, this was the size determined for Test Cells 2 & 3. As Test Cell 1 is not brick clad, it was built so that the internal volume of each cell is identical. Therefore, the wall and roof frames for each cell are identical.
The cells are orientated exactly solar north-south. They are spaced far enough apart so that one does not cast shadows on another at noon on the winter solstice.
You can view the construction drawings below: