Chapter Meeting: ABAA Research Initiatives and Impacts on Specification of AWB’s

When:  Nov 19, 2019 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM (CT)
Associated with  Chicago

Updates on Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA) Research Initiatives and Impacts on Specification of AWB’s

Building enclosure design involves balancing the demands of air, water and thermal considerations. Air and water barriers (AWB) are often incorporated to provide weather protection which require continuity to perform successfully. Available guidelines for detailing and testing the installed AWB is limited, and installation practices are not consistent from project to project. While improved installation methods and consensus standards for validating air and water tightness are needed, ABAA has also identified a need for research to assess moisture detection approaches and the evaluation methodologies to employ. This session will discuss the research underway, as well as the background and context of the current practices related to AWB’s.

Presented by:

Sarah K. Flock, NCARB, BECxP, CxA+BE
Co-Chair of the Research Committee for the Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA)


The presentation will focus on the following learning objectives:

  1. Introduce the history of Water Resistive Barriers (WRBs) and current trends.
  2. Discuss existing code compliance and standards.
  3. Summarize ABAA research and testing status including for fastener penetrations and pull adhesion.
  4. Review of current and proposed test methods.
  5. Discuss practical approaches to improving specifications using currently available test standards.

Continuing Education: 1.0 AIA CES LU|HSW

Cost for Program & Dinner:

CSI Chicago Members: Complimentary
Nonmembers: $60

Registration: Required by Tuesday, November 12.
No refunds for cancellations within 5 days of the event. 


Sarah K. Flock, NCARB, BECxP, CxA+BE
Co-Chair of the Research Committee for the Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA)

Sarah Flock is active in several professional organizations and speaks and writes on building enclosure thermal performance and condensation issues across the industry.  She serves on multiple ASTM International committees and is a member of Executive Committee and Co-Chair of the Research Committee for the Air Barrier Association of America (ABAA) and the Past Chairperson of the Building Enclosure Council (BEC-Chicago).  She is also a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Construction Specifications Institute (CSI), Exterior Design Institute (EDI), and American Society of Healthcare Engineering (ASHE).  She is a licensed Architect in multiple states and is a certified Building Enclosure Commissioning Process Provider (BECxP), and a certified Commissioning Authority + Building Enclosure (CxA+BE). 

Sarah is a Principal of Raths, Raths & Johnson, Inc., an Illinois-based engineering, architecture, and forensics consulting firm with over 17 years of architectural experience in the investigation, design, repair, and testing of building enclosure systems and materials performance.  She is a recognized expert in exterior wall systems' water leakage and condensation investigation and resolution with a specialization in thermal performance and computational analysis of building enclosure systems and components.  She consults in the areas of exterior wall systems investigations, thermal modeling, building enclosure consulting and commissioning, and litigation support of related moisture intrusion problems.

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CSI is a AIA CES Registered Provider (Provider Number S000).

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