The influence of seasonal characteristics in elderly thermal comfort in Korea

Jinho Yang, Insick Nam, Jong Ryeul Sohn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


The demand for specialized service facilities for elderly has increased as the population has aged. However, few studies have examined thermal comfort in older people living in these facilities. The aims of this study were (i) to characterize the influence of seasonality on elderly care centers (ECCs) thermal environments; (ii) analyze elderly physical conditions; and (iii) assess indoor environments thermal parameters in Korean ECCs. We administered a survey at 26 ECCs in Korea between April 2013 and March 2014. The questionnaire included thermal sensation votes (TSV), thermal comfort votes, thermal satisfaction votes, clothing insulation, and metabolism. The parameters of measurements were the air temperature, the relative humidity, the globe temperature, and air velocity. Linear regression between TSV and predicted mean vote (PMV) met the ideal case (PMV = TSV) at the origin; however, the slope of the regression equation was lower. Elderly prefer the cooling season, which is warm and slightly hot without air conditioning. Clothing insulation in mid-season was more widespread, diverse, and sensitive to outdoor temperature than it was in other seasons. In addition, metabolism was almost constant. Elderly and ECCs have characteristic features; thus, suitable assessment and more studies on the indoor environment of ECCs are necessary.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-591
Number of pages9
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Sept 15


  • Elderly
  • Elderly care centers
  • Season
  • Thermal comfort
  • Thermal environments
  • Thermal sensation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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