A computer model for the assessment of employee performance loss as a function of thermal discomfort or degree of heat stress

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This article presents an overview of different research and researchers’ attempts to derive a mathematical relationship between the performance loss and the thermal (dis)comfort of working people, expressed in the mean temperature sensation. The goal of this article and research is to present a single computer model and manageable design tool for a variety of disciplines, that is, mechanical engineering, building services and facility management, disciplines that participate in the design of the indoor environment of new or existing buildings and the improvement of working conditions in the workplace. The single computer model proposed in this article is assembled using a validated mathematical human thermophysiological model and a validated mathematical Wet Bulb Globe Temperature Index model, in combination with various mathematical performance (loss) models, based on comfort indices and heat stress indices. Although not perfect, the model is especially useful in the situation of comparative studies. For instance, in the early stages of the design process, the computer model assists in making better/the right (design) decisions regarding the thermal aspects of the indoor environment, whether or not in combination with validated building simulation models. The use of a dynamic thermophysiological model, in combination with the aforementioned models, enables the evaluation of the thermal influence of every architectural and building service and related adjustments for people and organizations. The use of a combination of models, as shown above, makes it possible to negotiate solutions and better balance investments with regard for profits and workable hours.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-214
Number of pages20
JournalIntelligent Buildings International
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • cognitive studies
  • mathematical modelling
  • performance
  • thermal comfort
  • workplace


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