Boualem Ouazia, Iain Macdonald, Alexandra Thompson and Daniel Booth
Bibliographic info:
The International Journal of Ventilation, Vol. 10 N°4, March 2012

For residential forced air heating and cooling systems conventional thinking is that air supply registers should be located under exterior windows. There were good reasons for this in the past (primarily to counteract the cold downdraught from the window) but new construction standards (well-insulated walls, better glazing and air tight wall/window interface) mean that there is now less downdraught. Positioning the supply air register away from a window could have a large impact for new construction as duct lengths could be shortened (saving materials and construction time). This could also allow greater architectural freedom as the forced air system would not need to be ducted to the building perimeter. This paper presents results from experiments conducted in a new, well-constructed building to evaluate whether the supply registers can be moved away from the traditional location without impacting indoor air quality or predicted thermal comfort. The physical experiments showed that in both traditional and non-traditional placement: (1) there are minimal changes in predicted thermal comfort (a measure of thermal discomfort - vertical air temperature difference much lower than 3K), and (2) contaminant-removal effectiveness (a measure of indoor air quality) values were in the same range.