Comfort assessment in the context of sustainable buildings: Comparison of simplified and detailed human thermal sensation methods

Riikka Holopainen (Corresponding Author), Pekka Tuomaala, P. Hernandez, Tarja Häkkinen, Kalevi Piira, Jouko Piippo

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    46 Citations (Scopus)


    This paper, based on research conducted under the EU FP7 "SuPerBuildings" project, presents current practice and approaches to comfort assessment and specification. The paper compares and discusses the results of different methods used for the calculation of thermal comfort: Fanger's PMV method, the adaptive predicted mean vote (aPMV) method, a Human Thermal Model integrated in a building simulation environment and the adaptive control algorithm ACA as an example of the adaptive comfort methods are described and applied to a test case. Results show how HTM, aPMV and ACA allow for more flexibility of the indoor conditions than the Fanger's PMV method. These flexible conditions would mean that unnecessary heating and cooling could be avoided in situations where there is still an acceptable degree of satisfaction with the indoor environment. These approaches would therefore help for an assessment in the context of sustainable building assessment, where satisfactory indoor conditions are sought, while ensuring low energy use and running costs and therefore improving environmental and economic performance of the building.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)60-70
    JournalBuilding and Environment
    Publication statusPublished - 2014
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed



    • adaptive comfort
    • human thermal model
    • sustainable building
    • thermal comfort
    • thermal sensation

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