Thermal Comfort and Glazing in Lab Spaces

Tuesday, April 25, 1:30 - 2:20 PM

In laboratory spaces, mechanical systems, such as perimeter heating, compensate for shortcomings in envelope performance to provide a thermally comfortable environment. However, with an increased interest in maximizing energy efficiency and providing healthy spaces for occupants, this model is due for reconsideration. With a better understanding of how thermal comfort is affected by different glazing performance criteria and geometries in the wintertime, architects and engineers are able to make informed decisions when selecting a glazing scenario. This then ensures a comfortable environment for occupants without the need of supplemental perimeter heating strategies. This session will address two factors when designing a glazed opening in cold climates: radiant discomfort and downdraft discomfort, and how each correlates to the glazing U-factor and window geometry. The session will cover the physics of glazing heat loss and its impact on comfort, and will utilize a new, publicly available web tool to guide the audience through the decision-making process that will ensure a comfortable environment early in the design.

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