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Ventilation and work performance

Seppanen O., Fisk W.J., Lei G.H., Heinonen J., 2006
ventilation rate | economics | office building | productivity | performance
Bibliographic info: 27th AIVC and 4th Epic Conference "Technologies & sustainable policies for a radical decrease of the energy consumption in buildings", Lyon, France, 20-22 November 2006
Languages: English

The paper evaluates the potential work performance benefits of increased ventilation. We analysed the literature relating work performance with ventilation rate and employed statistical analyses. The studies included in the review assessed performance of various tasks in laboratory experiments and measured performance at work in real buildings. Almost all studies found increases in performance with higher ventilation rates. The studies indicated typically a 1-3 % improvement in average performance per 10 L/sperson increase in outdoor air ventilation rate. The performance increase per unit increase in ventilation was bigger with ventilation rates below 20 L/s-person and almost negligible with ventilation rates over 45 L/s-person. The performance increase was statistically significant with increased ventilation rates up to 15 L/s-person with 95% confidence interval. This relationship has a high level of uncertainty; however, use of this relationship in ventilation design and feasibility studies may be preferable to the current practice, which ignores the relationship between ventilation and productivity. With an example we show that that an increase of ventilation rate from 6,5 or 10 L/s to 20 L/s per person results in much greater benefits with increased productivity than corresponding in crease in total energy consumption in a typical Finnish office building.

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