Impact of the measurement uncertainty on the monitoring of thermal comfort through AI predictive algorithms

Nicole Morresi, Sara Casaccia, Marco Arnesano, Gian Marco Revel


This paper presents an approach to assess the measurement uncertainty of human thermal comfort by using an innovative method that comprises a heterogeneous set of data, made by physiological and environmental quantities, and artificial intelligence algorithms, using Monte Carlo method (MCM). The dataset is made up of heart rate variability (HRV) features, air temperature, air velocity and relative humidity. Firstly, MCM is applied to compute the measurement uncertainty of the HRV features: results have shown that among 13 participants, there are uncertainty values in the measurement of HRV features that ranges from ±0.01% to ±0.7 %, suggesting that the uncertainty can be generalized among different subjects. Secondly, MCM is applied by perturbing the input parameters of random forest (RF) and convolutional neural network (CNN) algorithm, trained to measure human thermal comfort. Results show that environmental quantities produce different uncertainty on the thermal comfort: RF has the highest uncertainty due to the air temperature (14 %), while CNN has the highest uncertainty when relative humidity is perturbed (10.5 %). A sensitivity analysis also shows that air velocity is the parameter that causes a higher deviation of thermal comfort

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