A study on the influences of immediate thermal history on current thermal sensation

Ji, W., Cao, B., Geng, Y., Zhu, Y., & Lin, B , Energy and Buildings ,198 (2019), 364-376.

Previous thermal history usually influences current thermal sensation and thermal comfort. In reality, people can adjust their clothes, activities, and other factors to achieve a relatively comfortable state, which is different to a study in a controlled chamber. The purpose of this study is to explore the regularity of thermal history on human thermal sensation in the real scenario. We recruited 56 university students and asked them to carry a portable instrument that could automatically record the temperature and relative humidity wherever they went. At the same time, they were instructed to complete a questionnaire whenever they transformed the sites or had some abrupt changes in thermal feelings. The results showed that the acceptable temperature range was wider, and the influence of a cold experience was more significant on thermal perception. A new index was proposed which was used to describe the synthetic effect of the previous temperature change at any time scale. In addition, the influences of the activity type and the clothing insulation changes were discussed. A thermal history map of the university was presented to illustrate the behavioural characteristics of the students. These findings are meaningful for further studies on short-term thermal history and related human behaviours.

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