Standard Effective Temperature: A Metric for Thermal Comfort and Resilience

Do you know how hot or cold your building would be if the power went out? You could be using thermal modeling to find out.

Why live in Phoenix over Miami, even if it’s a bit hotter? As any retiree will tell you, it could be 90°F in Florida and 99°F in Arizona, and Phoenix with its dry air would still feel more comfortable.

The metric standard effective temperature (SET) has long been used in ASHRAE Standard 55 for Thermal Comfort to account for the fact that humans’ tolerance for high or low air temperatures can vary depending on humidity and other factors. It does so by converting data from an actual environment into a theoretical dry-bulb temperature—something like the “feels like” temperature you see in weather reports.

Published March 7, 2016