Session Number 232

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Click here for session handout.


IEQ and Thermal Comfort: The Next Energy Efficiency Frontier?

Brian Just, Manager, Engineer

Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC)

Winooski, Vermont

About this program:

Indoor air quality (IAQ) is all the rage, but it’s just part of the broader framework of indoor environmental quality (IEQ) that includes another critical piece: thermal comfort. IAQ and thermal comfort are integral to the energy efficiency paradigm but get downplayed as soft topics. They aren’t! This session focuses on thermal comfort.


ASHRAE 55 is the building industry’s thermal comfort standard, and it’s been around since the 1960s. Though in my experience it doesn’t seem to be widely used or understood, it can help you accurately predict comfort in buildings. It can help you design buildings/upgrades to maximize occupant comfort. It can provide hard numbers to support decisions around R-values, window selection, controls, ventilation equipment, and much more.


You’ll walk away from this session knowing the 6 primary thermal comfort factors according to ASHRAE 55 and how PMV and/or PDD are used to evaluate and predict comfort. You’ll learn about freely-available thermal comfort evaluation tools and up-and-coming topics such as adaptive comfort and hedonic response (“thermal delight”). And we’ll also have time for discussion about how to add value to your work by integrating thermal comfort into your interactions with customers.

About the Presenter:

Brian Just manages a team of Efficiency Vermont Residential New Construction energy consultants and works on a variety of energy efficiency initiatives at VEIC. He is Passive House and LEED AP accredited, and currently serves as president of the Vermont Green Building Network. Brian is committed to serving the residential design and construction community as its members pave the way to a future of highly efficient—but also healthy, durable, and comfortable—homes.

Program Level: Basic-Intermediate

Content Area(s): Building Design & Construction (including Green), Occupant Health/Medical Issues, Energy Efficiency, High Performance Buildings