Investigating current trends in clothing insulation using a global thermal comfort database

Ricardo Forgiarini Rupp*, Ongun Berk Kazanci, Jørn Toftum

*Corresponding author for this work

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Clothing insulation is a key parameter to assess thermal comfort and is one of the most difficult parameters to estimate in field studies. The recent ASHRAE Global Thermal Comfort Database II contains a large sample of clothing insulation in addition to a wide range of other thermal and contextual parameters. However, the database does not provide details on whether the clothing insulation included the additional insulation that is provided by chairs for seated occupants. This may affect thermal comfort predictions. The objective of this study was to analyse the clothing insulation in ASHRAE Global Thermal Comfort Database I and II. First, additional information on ensemble and chair insulation was collected to complement database II. Then, predictive models of ensemble insulation were derived for office buildings, and the combined ensemble and chair insulation was used to analyse the sensitivity of the Predicted Mean Vote (PMV) to the clothing insulation. The developed model can predict the ensemble insulation as a function of the indoor air temperature, the season and the building ventilation type (air-conditioning, natural ventilation or mixed-mode). The PMV predictions improved by accounting for the chair insulation, which may further impact the indoor environment classification according to the European standard EN 16798-1.
Original languageEnglish
Article number111431
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Field studies
  • Chair insulation
  • Logistic regression
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • PMV


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