On-line version ISSN 1678-8621
CANDIDO, Christhina; LAMBERTS, Roberto; BITTENCOURT, Leonardo and DEAR, Richard de. The relevance of air velocity limits for thermal comfort purposes in hot-humid climates. Ambient. constr. (Online) [online]. 2010, vol.10, n.4, pp. 59-68. ISSN 1678-8621. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1678-86212010000400005.
This article discusses the air velocity limits established by ASHRAE 55 (2004) and ISO 7730 (2005). A comparative analysis was developed between those air velocity limits and users' answers for air movement preferences and acceptability, obtained in field experiments carried out in the city of Maceio, Alagoas, Brazil. The results suggest that the air velocity limits specified by those standards are lower than those required by users. The results indicate that a significant percentage of users demand "more air movement". When those results were combined with the answers on air movement acceptability, the number of unsatisfied users increased, as well as the demand for higher air velocity levels. The same air movement that is considered unacceptable in cold or temperate climates is desirable in hot-humid climates. Therefore the application of maximum air velocity limits from studies carried out in a climate that has different characteristics should be avoided. Air velocity limits should be defined based on field experiments in naturally ventilated indoor environments where adaptive opportunities are available in order to re-establish users' thermal comfort. Future standards in Brazil should consider these issues, in order to establish air velocity limits that can meet users expectations in hot-humid climates.
Keywords : Air velocity; Thermal comfort; Standards.