Students' health and productivity are affected by the thermal conditions inside the educational environments. Considering the lack of thermal comfort research in the Arabian Gulf region, the combination of the extreme climatic conditions, the general restriction on adaptive actions, and the lack of economic responsibility lead to heavy reliance on air conditioning units, which has environmental and economical sequences. A first step in reducing this reliance is understanding the students' thermal experiences. This paper attempts to feed the pool of thermal comfort research in the Arabic region by investigating and comparing the thermal conditions of female and male students considering their neutral temperatures and acceptability limits. Objective and subjective data were collected from five and three female and male schools respectively during the cooler season. Analysing the former data revealed the general similarity of the thermal conditions inside the investigated classrooms except for three classrooms. Around 50% of the female students were (neutral) compared with almost 20% of male students despite the heavier insulation level of the former, which may indicate an addiction to ACs for the male students. Applying Griffiths’ method, the neutral temperature was estimated at 24.3 ± 1.09 °C for the former students and 26.1 ± 0.92 °C for the latter students. Comparatively, the acceptability limits of the male students were shifted to the warm side of the thermal continuum.
|Journal||Journal of Building Engineering|
|Publication status||Published - 2020|
- Saudi Arabia
- Thermal comfort