Because of global warming, heat waves are becoming more frequent. We are now in a global race against time to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions. This has highlighted the importance of making the thermal comfort of buildings a strategic and economic priority, EPFL Technical University of Switzerland wrote in a press release. The solution appears to be a customized climate control system for each office employee.
Personal Thermal Conditioning is the focus of Dolaana Khovalyg’s research. She is an Assistant Professor of Career Path at the EPFL School of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering (ENAC) and Chair of the Integrated Comfort Engineering (ICE) Laboratory.
Khovalyg points out the benefits of personal climate control and heating for each office, rather than maintaining a standard temperature in an open space. Her team came to this conclusion after the human thermophysiological data they collected showed that people show very different levels of thermal comfort under normal office conditions. They choose a multidisciplinary approach. She combined applied technical knowledge and knowledge of human physiology in the study of human-building interaction.
Researchers analyzed the energy costs of six people sharing the same office space. For three months, the candidates participated in a series of experiments in a special climate-controlled room at the ICE laboratory in Friborg. They perform daily activities such as sitting, standing, and eating. The researchers found significant differences between individuals, including between two men of the same build who performed the exact same office tasks.
The ability to accurately measure per capita energy consumption paves the way for a new type of technology. The collected data is entered into central heating and cooling systems. This way they can adjust the temperature in a specific room in real time and optimize the energy consumption of the building.
Currently, heated and cooled office settings usually have limited temperature settings. But this technology will make it possible to adjust the temperature for each office worker. However, it remains to be seen how personal data is handled. One current option is to use non-invasive measuring equipment that does not store any personal data.
Zombie specialist. Friendly twitter guru. Internet buff. Organizer. Coffee trailblazer. Lifelong problem solver. Certified travel enthusiast. Alcohol geek.