ArgumentNo. 8/2016

Aging of Building Materials and the Health of Users. A Neglected Relationship in Architectural Design

Abstract

This paper aims to question the way in which construction materials, used for the anthropic habitat, influence the health status and thus the productivity of the users. Generated as a natural response to human needs and refined over time, traditional materials can be put into practice without major uncertainties regarding their behavior during use of the building. Not the same can be said about the products of new technology, whose development rate mimics the speed that characterizes the information age in which we find ourselves, thus frequently removing time from the equation. Key factor in the study of the effects, either beneficial or harmful, which avant-garde materials have on indoor environmental quality, time is the price that should be paid to test the validity of these innovations for widespread use. Actually, new building materials are received with arms wide open, the people who surround themselves with them being turned, often involuntary, in guinea pigs.

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