COMFORT IN AUSTRALIAN OFFICES

  • YEAR
    2014
  • AUTHORS
    Luther, Mark Brandt
    Roetzel, Astrid
  • CATEGORIES
    2014 Conference Papers
    Thermal Comfort Lighting & Acoustics

Extract

Thermal comfort models, as we know them today, have been available since the early 1970’s and have been applied to assess the conditioning of our buildings. What we have is a comfort value of an interior environment at a particular location as a result of several measured parameters. What we don’t often consider is how the build-ing contributes to this resulting thermal environment and how occu-pants respond to its possible changes. The following research consid-ers the climatic and comfort findings from 15 fully air conditioned office buildings between Brisbane and Melbourne Australia during brief seasonal periods of measurement. Initially, each office building was considered as its own individual project; however the grouping of the results has led to some interesting observations:

Regardless of building type or whether there is a narrow controlled comfort band, there can be a significant variation in the clothing level of occupants.
There is a greater exterior to interior air temperature correlation than might be expected among fully air-conditioned buildings.
The diurnal ranges of interior temperatures (over 24 hours) may be far greater than anticipated.

It is realised that fully conditioned buildings are far more variable than perhaps realised and that occupant comfort may relate more to user interaction (CLO value), building construction type (weight) and envelope air tightness. As a result, this investigation raises perhaps more questions than answers as to how we assess thermal comfort in buildings.

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