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AF1301 Building Materials, Basic Course 7.5 credits

In the course general demands are described on building materials, chemical, physical and mechanical characteristics. As well as material properties and material combinations from a sustainability and durability perspective. The course also includes a section of future trends in building materials.

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Choose semester and course offering to see current information and more about the course, such as course syllabus, study period, and application information.


For course offering

Autumn 2024 Start 26 Aug 2024 programme students

Application code


Headings with content from the Course syllabus AF1301 (Autumn 2024–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

In the course general demands are described on building materials Chemical and physical structure and mechanical characteristics, and a small part about selection of materials and development of new materials. Next moment treats different building materials divided in groups due to the function in the building. Every material group deal with, raw material, manufacturing, chemical and physical structure, material qualities, characteristics, essential material parameters, common applications, durability and service life in different environments. And give an introduction to environmental assessments of building materials, recycling and re-use of building materials.

Intended learning outcomes

After the course, for grade E, you should be able to:

Define basic concepts of mechanical and physical characteristics of building materials.

Perform some simple calculations for moisture and heat transport in the building materials. 

Perform some simple calculations of moisture movements in materials, and assess the material moisture condition on material properties.

Perform basic strength and deformations calculations for building materials and material combinations, both for instantaneous loads and for long-term loads.

Use plausibility check to assess calculations or assumptions.

Describe the most commonly building materials used in the construction industry and be able to describe its material properties, structural structure and use.

Describe interaction between material and the environment, both the environment's impact on materials and the material impact on the environment.

Describe long-term properties of the construction material, throughout its life cycle.

To use the vocabulary for building materials and material parameters for in a credible way to communicate with specialists.

For higher score, grade D-A, you will also be able to:

Perform more complex calculations for moisture and heat transport in the building materials. 

Define complex context and concepts for mechanical and physical characteristics of building materials.

Compare and evaluate different material properties and based on the drag conclusions on material impact on the environment or the environment impact on materials both in the short term and long term properties.

Evaluate information on building materials and to propose appropriate materials selection to complex structures in different environments.

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

AI1527 Introduction to the Planning and Building Process.

At least 4.5 ECTS from AF1002 Buildings and Civil Engineering Structures.

Recommended prerequisites

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Burström, P-G, "Byggnadsmaterial - Uppbyggnad, tillverkning och egenskaper", Studentlitteratur, Lund.

latest edition

Burström, P-G, "Byggnadsmaterial. Övningsbok", Studentlitteratur, Lund. 

latest edition

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • LAB1 - Laboratory Work, 1.5 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • TEN1 - Examination, 6.0 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Examination (TEN1; 6 cr)

Verbal examination of accomplished laboration

Laboration (LAB1; 1,5 cr)

Other requirements for final grade

Pass moment, TEN1 and LAB1

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

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Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course room in Canvas

Registered students find further information about the implementation of the course in the course room in Canvas. A link to the course room can be found under the tab Studies in the Personal menu at the start of the course.

Offered by

Main field of study


Education cycle

First cycle

Add-on studies

AF1402 Building Physics


Rickard Bellander ( 08 790 8640