• 2502 Citations
1992 …2020
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Personal profile


Understanding the durability of materials is understanding the moisture and ion transport

Research profile

Leo Pel is an Associate Professor in the group transport in Permeable Media at the Department of Applied Physics, Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). Leo does research in Fluid Dynamics, Materials Science and Experimental Physics. His main research interest is the combined moisture and ion transport and crystallization in porous media in order to understand damages. In the group, the potential of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) imaging on multiple length scales is combined with physical and mathematical modeling. Over the past years, the group we has built up a collection of NMR setups, which offer the unique possibility to non-destructively measure the moisture and ion content in porous media over various length scales. 

Leo’s current research focuses on Cl transport in concrete, electro kinetic transport of Li in concrete and expansion of wood due to moisture. His group studies the transport of moisture and ions in a variety of permeable materials, ranging from porous building materials of macroscopic dimensions, such as brick and concrete, over chemical reactors up to thin polymer coatings. The goal is to improve the performance by identifying the key parameters that govern the transport and damage mechanisms. 

Academic background

Leo Pel obtained his MSc in Applied Physics and received his PhD from the Department of Architecture, Building and Planning at TU/e for his thesis ‘Moisture transport in porous building materials’ in 1994. Following this, he worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher on the STW project ETN.3400: Development of a measurement method to determine moisture transport processes in porous materials’.  

In 2006, he was a Visiting Researcher at the J. Paul Getty Museum and in 2008 he was a Visiting Fellow at Princeton University. Leo is a regular contributor to leading journalsLeo held two postdoc positions before becoming an Associate Professor at TU/e. He is involved in various national and international projects focusing on understanding the durability of porous materials. In addition, he has taken part in various EU programs focusing on the conservation of our cultural heritage.  

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Research Output 1992 2020

Moisture-induced bending of an oak board exposed to bilateral humidity fluctuations

Arends, T., Ruijten, P. & Pel, L., 1 Jan 2020, In : Journal of Building Engineering. 27, 11 p., 100957

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Atmospheric humidity
Phase shift

Comparison of different techniques to study the nanostructure and the microstructure of cementitious materials with and without superabsorbent polymers

Snoeck, D., Pel, L. & De Belie, N., 30 Oct 2019, In : Construction and Building Materials. 223, p. 244-253 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Pore size

Dynamic moisture-induced bending of oak boards: an experimental study

Arends, T., 12 Sep 2019, Eindhoven: Technische Universiteit Eindhoven. 195 p.

Research output: ThesisPhd Thesis 1 (Research TU/e / Graduation TU/e)Academic

Open Access
Experimental study

Dynamics of heterogeneous crosslinking in room temperature vulcanizing poly(dimethyl siloxane) and its dependence on moisture supply

Arends, T., Huinink, H. P. & Pel, L., 2019, In : Polymer. 164, p. 8-16 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Nuclear magnetic resonance

Relating relative humidity fluctuations to damage in oak panel paintings by a simple experiment

Arends, T., Pel, L., Schellen, H. L. & Smeulders, D. M. J., 1 Feb 2019, In : Studies in Conservation. 64, 2, p. 101-114 14 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
Panel Painting

Student theses

A dedicated NMR setup for 3D drying experiments

Author: Erich, S., 31 Aug 2002

Supervisor: Kopinga, K. (Supervisor 1), Pel, L. (Supervisor 2) & Rijniers, L. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master


An NMR study of the dehydration of NaBr.2H2O and Na2SO4.10H2O crystals

Author: van Rens, J., 2012

Supervisor: Pel, L. (Supervisor 1)

Student thesis: Bachelor


Cryoporometrie met behulp van kernspinresonantie

Author: Buzing, N., 31 Aug 1996

Supervisor: Pel, L. (Supervisor 1)

Student thesis: Master


De ontwikkeling van een fluxgate magnetometer

Author: Pel, L., 31 Aug 1988

Supervisor: Kopinga, K. (Supervisor 1) & de Jonge, W. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master


Design and construction of a 3d MRI setup to study chemical separation processes

Author: Blok, R., 31 Oct 1999

Supervisor: Pel, L. (Supervisor 1)

Student thesis: Master