Evaluation of building and occupant response to temperature and humidity: non-traditional heat stress considerations A comparison of different construction types used by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice
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This study examined the effects of construction types on the indoor environment of selected prison facilities in the State of Texas. Three collocated facilities of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice were monitored for temperature, relative humidity and barometric pressure over a period of fifteen months. The objectives of the study were to examine the response of the built environment to the stressors of ambient conditions, characterize the influence of the construction method for each facility and study the responses of the occupants of the buildings. From the data, an apparent temperature was calculated and then compared to the data collected by the regional National Weather Service facility for ambient conditions. A relationship between the type of facility and the resulting indoor environmental conditions was established. The construction materials chosen for a particular facility affected not only the rate of heating of the indoor environment but also the maximum temperature, apparent temperature and thermal variation experienced by the occupants. The peak temperature and relative humidity were higher in the metal facilities when compared to the concrete facility. Therefore, the difference in occupant living conditions was considerable when the internal environmental conditions (temperature and humidity) were compared between construction types. The concrete construction also moderated the changes in the occupant environment through a lag of internal conditions behind those of the external environment. This resulted in a slower apparent temperature rise over the course of the day in the concrete buildings and a delay in the internal high temperature of the day. Finally, the data shows that measures of aggression vary with the seasonal changes, Increasing in the warming months and decreasing in the cooling months. This increase in the metal constructed facilities is greater than the rate of increase found in the concrete constructed facility.
Nalbone, Joseph Torey (2004). Evaluation of building and occupant response to temperature and humidity: non-traditional heat stress considerations A comparison of different construction types used by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from