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Ceramic Products Laboratory

The Ceramic Products Laboratory is integrated in the Concrete, Stone and Ceramics Unit (NBPC) of LNEC’s Department of Materials.
With the integration of the Ceramics Division in NBPC in 2013 the Ceramic Products Laboratory (UPC) was created, the latter having maintained the activities developed in the former Division. These activities have been carried out since the creation of LNEC, always with the aim of the construction sector, as regards research, technological development and innovation in the field of civil engineering.

Additional information can be found at this laboratory's flyer.

Field of expertise

UPC develops laboratory or in situ activity related with the characterization, performance and evaluation of various types of building materials, such as bricks, tiles, concrete block masonry, concrete blocks and slabs for paving, curbs, ceramic tiles, hydraulic mosaics, adhesives for coatings and ornamental stones.

This activity consists, apart from laboratory characterization, of carrying out in situ works such as core drilling, non-destructive testing, inspection of structures and other actions that support the issuing of expert reports, the creation of guidelines and the monitoring of the quality control.


UPC carries out the following laboratory tests, among others:

Bricks / Concrete masonry blocks

  • Compression;
  • Water absorption;
  • Traction compression.


  • Flexural strength;
  • Waterproofing;
  • Water absorption;
  • Resistance freeze / thaw.

Concrete block paving

  • Dimensions and deformations;
  • Water absorption;
  • Traction compression;
  • Resistance to abrasion.


  • Water absorption;
  • Flexural strength;
  • Resistance to abrasion.

Concrete paving slabs

  • Dimensions and deformations;
  • Water absorption;
  • Flexural strength;
  • Wear

Ornamental stone

  • Compression;
  • Flexural strength;
  • Porosity.

Wall and floor tiles

  • Determination of dimensions;
  • Determination of water absorption, porosity and bulk densities;
  • Determination of the modulus of rupture and bending strength;
  • Deep abrasion resistance of unglazed tiles;
  • Determination of resistance to surface abrasion for glazed tiles;
  • Determination of linear expansion of thermal origin;
  • Determination of expansion with moisture;
  • Determination of resistance to cracking glazed tiles;
  • Frost resistance determination.

Other services

In addition to the laboratory characterization tests referred to above as direct support to the construction sector, UPC develops its activity in other areas such as:

  • Studies for the preservation of historical heritage;
  • Support to restoration projects of tiles and other materials of a heritage interest;
  • Recommendations on the use of ceramic materials in the work;
  • Consultation on causes of pathologies in works of any kind.
  • Field services, mainly related with quality construction control and installation activities.