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Effects of low frequency wind-induced building motion on occupant comfort

Authors Burton, Melissa Deanne
Issue Date 2006
Summary A vital part of the design of modern tall buildings is the prediction of wind-induced motion and the assessment of its effects on occupant comfort. This tends to be of increased importance for buildings constructed in regions of high wind, such as Hong Kong. Current acceptability criteria give little consideration to the effects that low frequency, narrow-band random motion, typical of tall buildings in a windstorm; have on task performance, interference with building occupants' daily activities, and inhabitants' well-being during not only extreme storms such as typhoons, but also other more frequent strong wind events such as monsoons. The majority of the previous research conducted in this domain measures perception levels for sinusoidal and narrow-band random motion, while vaguely touching on the subject of acceptability. It has become recognized that it is no longer reasonable to assume that the level of motion of a tall building in a windstorm will fall below inhabitants' threshold of perception. Furthermore, the endpoint to which building accelerations must be reduced in order to prevent any adverse effects on occupant well-being has not been properly addressed. This thesis examines results from a number of large-scale investigations carried out in the motion simulator at HKUST, which focus on the frequency dependence of low levels of vibration, the performance on both manual and cognitive tasks in vibratory conditions, and the effects these conditions have on individual well-being. The outcome of the analysis is compared with a combination of results presented by previous researchers, various anecdotal accounts, a full-scale occupant survey conducted in Hong Kong and recommendations from a number of prominent wind engineers. The final product is occupant comfort criteria for limiting wind-induced tall-building motion that are well in advance of any currently in use.
Note Thesis (Ph.D.)--Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, 2006
Language English
Format Thesis
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