Are you ever too warm or too cold at work? Believe it or not, it might be because most office buildings still set the temperature based on the preferences of the average workers from the nineteen-sixties, who were mostly middle-aged men.

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Now that the workforce is more diverse, it’s harder to find one temperature that makes everyone comfortable.

So researchers at the Berkeley Center for the Built Environment wanted to find a way to give people personal control of their own comfort.

They invented an ergonomic office chair that is equipped with heater strips for warming and built-in fans for cooling. Each worker can then choose their own ideal temperature.

Fred Bauman
Fred Bauman

Bauman: “The chair can make somebody satisfied equally over a range of room temperatures anywhere from the mid-sixties up to the low eighties.”

That’s Fred Bauman. He says heating or cooling the person instead of the whole room can also dramatically cut energy costs.

Bauman: “Over the course of one year you could save five to seven percent on the heating side and on the cooling side for each degree that you either raise or lower the temperature.”

Targeting people, not room space, for most comfortable temperature. Click To Tweet

The chairs are already being sold to large companies, and will soon be available for individuals to purchase, too.

Reporting credit: Jason Jackson/ChavoBart Digital Media.

More Resources
Center For the Built Environment
Energy-efficient comfort with a heated/cooled chair: Results from human subject tests

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