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Interferences of urban form on human thermal perception

Krüger, Eduardo L., Costa, Tamiris
The Science of the total environment 2019 v.653 pp. 1067-1076
cognition, college students, computers, graphs, humans, questionnaires, sensation, thermal properties
Thermal perception entails to a certain extent visual aspects, which are taken into account when subjects are requested to express their thermal votes to a given indoor or outdoor space. This study concentrates on human cognition and preconceptions of thermal behavior from projected 360° imagery. Urban scenes have been shown with the concurrent administration of thermal perception questionnaires to two distinct sample groups: 1) volunteer participants (n = 86) who filled out online responses to questions regarding thermal perception in undisclosed locations; 2) undergraduate students (n = 85) under temperature-controlled conditions in a computer lab. Both groups have evaluated three different 360° urban scenes with varying morphology attributes using the provided web link to the 360° VR platform Roundme. Method of analysis included means, medians, statistical significance (p-value) and percentage graphs of perceived thermal sensation. Despite the absence of any information regarding location, season and time of day of the scenes, both groups expressed different perceptions with respect to the estimated thermal conditions and thermal comfort levels for the observed urban scenes, consistently attributing windier and warmer thermal conditions to an urban square location and less so to a street canyon.