Air conditioning in a tropical climate: impacts upon European residents in Darwin, Australia

A. Auliciems, R. Dedear

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    34 Citations (Scopus)


    The efficacy of current practices in air conditioning is investigated in the two monsoonal seasons in Darwin. Assessment is made of atmospheric parameters, clothing, metabolic rate. Some 1000 questionnaires are applied dealing with adaptations, health perceptions and preferences as related to air cooling and ventilation. The findings are discussed with reference to energy balance calculations and current models of psychological control in thermoregulation. The results indicate that Darwin's population is considerably overcooled, and contrary to assumptions and practice, air conditioning is not desired in office buildings during the "Dry". In the home, air conditioning is not regarded as essential. The indications are that a rationalization of air cooling to comply with natural variability in warmth would lead to a significant reduction in energy consumption, and an overall enhancement to the health and comfort of the population through the greater ventilation rates that would be economically feasible were design temperatures lifted.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)259-282
    Number of pages24
    JournalInternational Journal of Biometeorology
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Sept 1986


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