Findings of Personalized Ventilation Studies in a Hot and Humid Climate

Sekhar, S. C.; Gong, N.; Tham, K. W.; Cheong, K. W.; Melikov, A. K.; Wyon, D. P.; Fanger, P. O.
October 2005
HVAC&R Research;Oct2005, Vol. 11 Issue 4, p603
Academic Journal
The concept of personalized ventilation (PV) is at the cutting edge of technological development in the area of air conditioning and is fundamentally aimed at improving ventilation in Ihe immediate breathing zones of occupants in the built environment. While the current state-of-the-art PV systems, make this possible for seated individuals within the occupied zone, it is envisaged that flexible PV systems, extending the range of applicalion within the dynamic movements of individuals in an air-conditioned zone, may be a reality in the near future. The abilily of PV systems to enhance thermal comfort and indoor air quality (IAQ) and the energy savings that would result were examined under the hot and humid tropical conditions of Singapore. The experimental design consisted of 17 different environmental conditions, characterized by a combination of room ambient temperature (23�C and 26�), PV air temperature (20�C, 23�C, and 26�C), and the PV airflow rate (7, 11, and 15 l/s per person). The experimenlal design also included a reference condition wilt the primary background air-conditioning system operating under the same conditions but without PV air. Eleven human subjects took part in all the experiments and a detailed questionnaire was employed to solicit their subjective responses during each exposure. Air velocily, air temperature, and ventilation effectiveness were measured in the immediate breathing zone of each occupant. The results indicate that the use of a secondary PV system in conjunction with a primary air-conditioning system not only enhances thermal comfort and IAQ acceptability but can reduce energy consumption by 15-30%. PV systems can improve ventilation effectiveness at the immediate breathing zone by up to 50% more than can be obtained with mixing ventilation (MV) alone, and PV tends to lower the average temperalure of inhaled air in the breathing zone by 2-5 �C, enhancing perceived air quality. PV temperature and PV flow rate were found to be more critical than ambient temperature for occupants' thermal comfort and the perceived air quality of inhaled air.


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