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Impact of residents’ past thermal experiences on thermal comfort and energy performance in a high-rise residential building

Impact of residents’ past thermal experiences on thermal comfort and energy performance in a high-rise residential building
Impact of residents’ past thermal experiences on thermal comfort and energy performance in a high-rise residential building
Domestic space heating accounts for 19% of the UK’s total energy demand. Studies have shown that occupants’ behaviours and preferences can have a significant influence on space heating use. Currently the energy performance models used to estimate energy use assume occupants to be a homogeneous group with similar thermal preferences. However, studies conducted in numerous locations across the world have found that peoples’ preferences for their indoor environment are closely linked to the local climate. This work investigated the influence of moving from one climate to another on thermal preferences in a residential setting and the associated energy implications.

The study employed field studies conducted over three consecutive academic years, including one pilot study, in a University halls of residence in Southampton, UK. The first full field study (n=47) consisted of four rounds of face-to-face survey visits conducted in occupants’ accommodation rooms with in-situ environmental measurements and long term indoor air temperature monitoring. The second full field study (n=22) collected survey responses using a custom-built smartphone app with long term indoor air temperature monitoring. The findings from these studies informed a dynamic simulation energy model that was used to investigate the impact of diversity in set point temperature, occupancy pattern and ventilation strategy on overall space heating demand.

Key findings from this work indicated that there are statistically significant differences in temperature preference between long term and new UK residents. This is also reflected in the actual indoor temperatures maintained by occupants. Furthermore, there was no evidence found that these preferences change over the first six months of occupancy. The results also highlighted the importance of indoor thermal history, in addition to outdoor climate, in determining people’s expectations for the indoor environment. From these findings, a conceptual model for understanding adaptive thermal comfort in conditioned spaces was formulated and explored. Energy performance modelling revealed substantial differences in space heating demand based on diversity in occupants preferences and behaviour. This is likely to have implications for building managers in cases where occupants are from mixed climatic backgrounds.
University of Southampton
Amin, Rucha
270871ec-9009-4bad-bd6c-d12bffa0a2cf
Amin, Rucha
270871ec-9009-4bad-bd6c-d12bffa0a2cf
James, Patrick
da0be14a-aa63-46a7-8646-a37f9a02a71b

Amin, Rucha (2018) Impact of residents’ past thermal experiences on thermal comfort and energy performance in a high-rise residential building. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 258pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Domestic space heating accounts for 19% of the UK’s total energy demand. Studies have shown that occupants’ behaviours and preferences can have a significant influence on space heating use. Currently the energy performance models used to estimate energy use assume occupants to be a homogeneous group with similar thermal preferences. However, studies conducted in numerous locations across the world have found that peoples’ preferences for their indoor environment are closely linked to the local climate. This work investigated the influence of moving from one climate to another on thermal preferences in a residential setting and the associated energy implications.

The study employed field studies conducted over three consecutive academic years, including one pilot study, in a University halls of residence in Southampton, UK. The first full field study (n=47) consisted of four rounds of face-to-face survey visits conducted in occupants’ accommodation rooms with in-situ environmental measurements and long term indoor air temperature monitoring. The second full field study (n=22) collected survey responses using a custom-built smartphone app with long term indoor air temperature monitoring. The findings from these studies informed a dynamic simulation energy model that was used to investigate the impact of diversity in set point temperature, occupancy pattern and ventilation strategy on overall space heating demand.

Key findings from this work indicated that there are statistically significant differences in temperature preference between long term and new UK residents. This is also reflected in the actual indoor temperatures maintained by occupants. Furthermore, there was no evidence found that these preferences change over the first six months of occupancy. The results also highlighted the importance of indoor thermal history, in addition to outdoor climate, in determining people’s expectations for the indoor environment. From these findings, a conceptual model for understanding adaptive thermal comfort in conditioned spaces was formulated and explored. Energy performance modelling revealed substantial differences in space heating demand based on diversity in occupants preferences and behaviour. This is likely to have implications for building managers in cases where occupants are from mixed climatic backgrounds.

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Amin thesis revised - Version of Record
Available under License University of Southampton Thesis Licence.
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Published date: January 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 430346
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/430346
PURE UUID: f5a094d1-dc9d-449d-9d9e-d376cd6fcde9
ORCID for Patrick James: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-2694-7054

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 26 Apr 2019 16:30
Last modified: 12 Nov 2019 02:01

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