Individually Controlled Indoor Environment

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


The thermal environment and inhaled air quality in buildings to which occupants are exposed has an effect on their health, comfort, performance and productivity. Heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) of buildings today is designed to provide a uniform environment. However, large individual differences in physiological and psychological response, clothing insulation, activity, preference for air temperature and movement, etc., exist between people. Environmental conditions acceptable for most of the occupants in buildings may be achieved by providing each occupant with the possibility to generate and control his/her own preferred microenvironment. Furthermore, HVAC systems should be designed to avoid transport of pollution between occupants and especially to protect occupants from airborne transmission of infectious agents in exhaled air. This paper reviews the existing knowledge on human response to an individually controlled microenvironment. Recently developed new principles and methods for individually controlled local heating and clean air distribution aimed at improving occupants¿ comfort and performance, as well as protection of occupants from airborne transmission of infectious agents, are discussed. The potential of these new methods and systems for energy savings is assessed. Recommendations for further research on human response and development of new systems with better design and performance are outlined.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProcedings of B4E Conference - Building for European Future
VolumeCD Rom
Place of PublicationBelgium
PublisherBelgian Building Research Institute
Publication date2004
Publication statusPublished - 2004
EventB4E Conference - Building for European Future - Bruselss, Belgium, 14-15 October
Duration: 1 Jan 2004 → …


ConferenceB4E Conference - Building for European Future
CityBruselss, Belgium, 14-15 October
Period01/01/2004 → …


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