In this study, the authors evaluated clothing insulation and changes in the metabolic rate of individuals in an office environment to determine thermal comfort. Clothing was evaluated using a questionnaire completed by 1306 workers in nine offices. The metabolic rates of 86 workers in three offices were measured using a physical activity meter. The distribution of the temperature at which a person in the room perceived a neutral thermal sensation was then calculated from the determined metabolic rates and clothing insulation values. The results demonstrate a noticeable difference between the average and most frequent values during the summer. Moreover, the required temperature distribution is not normal; rather, it is broad and skewed to the low-temperature side. Therefore, even if a thermally uniform environment is provided at the average required temperature by preventing temporal and spatial variations in the thermal environment, complaints of an unacceptably hot thermal environment are more likely to occur than complaints of an excessively cold thermal environment.
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