The colours of comfort : From thermal sensation to person-centric thermal zones for adaptive building strategies

Gauthier, Stephanie and Bourikas, Leonidas and Al‐Atrash, Farah and Bae, Chihye and Chun, Chungyoon and de Dear, Richard and Hellwig, Runa T. and Kim, Jungsoo and Kwon, Suhyun and Mora, Rodrigo and Pandya, Himani and Rawal, Rajan and Tartarini, Federico and Upadhyay, Rohit and Wagner, Andreas (2020) The colours of comfort : From thermal sensation to person-centric thermal zones for adaptive building strategies. Energy and Buildings, 216: 109936. ISSN 0378-7788

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Thermal comfort research has been traditionally based on cross-sectional studies and spatial aggregation of individual surveys at building level. This research design is susceptible to compositional effects and may lead to error in identifying predictors to thermal comfort indices, in particular in relation to adaptive mechanisms. A relationship between comfort and different predictors can be true at an individual level but not evident at the building level. In addition, cross-sectional studies overlook temporal changes in individual thermal perception due to contextual factors. To address these limitations, this study applied a longitudinal research design over 8 to 21 months in eight buildings located in six countries around the world. The dataset comprises of 5,567 individual thermal comfort surveys from 258 participants. The analysis aggregated survey responses at participant level and clustered participants according to their thermal sensation votes (TSV). Four TSV clusters were introduced, representing four different thermal sensation traits. Further analysis reviewed the probability of cluster membership in relation to demographic characteristics and behavioural adaptation. Finally, the analysis at individual level enabled the introduction of a new metric, the thermal zone (Zt), which in this study ranges from 21.5°C to 26.6°C. The thermal sensation traits and person-centric thermal zone (Zt) are a first step into the development of new metrics incorporating individual perceived comfort into dynamic building controls for adaptive buildings.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Energy and Buildings
Additional Information:
This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Energy and Buildings. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Energy and Buildings, 216, 2020 DOI: 10.1016/j.enbuild.2020.109936
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? adaptive thermal comfortclusteringindividual comfort profilesperson-centric thermal zonesadaptive building strategiesbuilding and constructioncivil and structural engineeringmechanical engineeringelectrical and electronic engineering ??
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02 Apr 2020 15:55
Last Modified:
15 Jul 2024 20:32