Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 1


1 Physiological and Psychological Influence on Office Workers during Demand Response

Authors: Megumi Nishida, Naoya Motegi, Takurou Kikuchi, Tomoko Tokumura


In recent years, the power system has been changed and a flexible power pricing system such as demand response has been sought in Japan. The demand response system works simply in the household sector and the owner as the decision-maker, can benefit from power saving. On the other hand, the execution of demand response in the office building is more complex than in the household because various people such as owners, building administrators and occupants are involved in the decision-making process. While the owners benefit from demand saving, the occupants are exposed to restricted benefits of a demand-saved environment. One of the reasons is that building systems are usually under centralized management and each occupant cannot choose freely whether to participate in demand response or not. In addition, it is unclear whether incentives give occupants the motivation to participate. However, the recent development of IT and building systems enables the personalized control of the office environment where each occupant can control the lighting level or temperature individually. Therefore, it can be possible to have a system which each occupant can make a decision of whether or not to participate in demand response in the office building. This study investigates personal responses to demand response requests, under the condition where each occupant can adjust their brightness individually in their workspace. Once workers participate in the demand response, their desk-lights are automatically turned off. The participation rates in the demand response events are compared among four groups, which are divided by different motivation, the presence, or absence of incentives and the method of participation. The result shows that there are significant differences of participation rates in demand response event between four groups. The method of participation has a large effect on the participation rate. The “Opt-out” groups where the occupants are automatically enrolled in a demand response event if they do not express non-participation have the highest participation rate in the four groups. Incentives also have an effect on the participation rate. This study also reports on the impact of low illumination office environment on the occupants, such as stress or fatigue. The electrocardiogram and the questionnaire are used to investigate the autonomic nervous activity and subjective fatigue symptoms of the occupants. There is no big difference between dim workspace during demand response event and bright workspace in autonomic nervous activity and fatigue.

Keywords: Demand response, illumination, questionnaire, electrocardiograph.

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