Cross-city comparison of indoor air temperatures in air-conditioned spaces


C. Chun
Department of Housing & Interior Design
Yonsei University, Seoul 120-749
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Abstract  Field measurements were collected through physical measurements and observations in the cities of Seoul, Korea; Eugene and Portland, Oregon; and Yokohama, Japan, during the fall, winter, and summer seasons from 2005 to 2006. A total of 1733 data sets were collected (Seoul – 713; Oregon – 807; Yokohama – 213) in variety of multi-use buildings with the goal of examining operative temperatures and conditions encountered during everyday life. Of the four cities measured, winter and autumn indoor operative temperatures were highest in Seoul and lowest in Yokohama when normalized to outdoor conditions. In contrast, summer indoor operative temperatures were highest in Yokohama and lowest in Oregon. Clothing levels changed seasonally, and differences were observed between ‘long-term occupants’, ‘residents’, and ‘transients.’

Practical Implications

To examine the wide range of conditions and thermal adaptation that humans are accustomed to in their regular everyday life (from home to work to traveling about town), we examined building operations and indoor climate conditions in four cities. The assumption was that, if notable differences exist, the application of the fixed-temperature thermal comfort standards that are applied to building environments worldwide should be re-examined, particularly in developing countries where there may be opportunities to conserve energy, to preserve local/regional adaptive behaviors, and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.