During the last decades, virtual reality (VR) has been devoted to supporting research in the architecture, engineering, and construction sectors because of its ability to provide multisensory three-dimensional (3D) environments. However, the use of immersive virtual environments (IVEs) in the design of the built environment is still in its infancy, and it is limited to visually designed spaces. In addition, a fundamental challenge lies in improving the sense of hearing. The effective simulation of the built environment with an overall realistic perception will support designers when identifying the influence of design decisions and building acoustics on individuals, therefore, properly designing acoustic strategies. In this study, five disrupting sound sources were selected to create a binaural soundtrack that was integrated within a virtual office environment to evaluate the effectiveness of the model (i.e., ecological validity) and the effects of acoustics on user comfort and cognitive performance (i.e., criterion validity). Independent measure design research was employed. In total, 104 participants performed working memory, inhibition, and task-switching tests under quiet (Q) or noise (N) conditions when the indoor air temperature remained constant. The results showed that the modeled virtual office created an excellent level of presence and immersivity with no significant cybersickness disorders (i.e., ecological validity). Ambient noise disrupted work efficiency with a relevant decrease in performance in each cognitive test (i.e., criterion validity). The sound environment was assessed as uncomfortable, chaotic, and boring. In addition, it negatively impacted the subjects’ thermal comfort vote (TCV). These results suggested the adequacy of IVE when providing an accurate representation of the variables measured; therefore, it supported effective user-centered design analysis and strategies.

Crossed Effect of Acoustics on Thermal Comfort and Productivity in Workplaces: A Case Study in Virtual Reality / Latini, Arianna; Di Loreto, Samantha; Di Giuseppe, Elisa; D’Orazio, Marco; Di Perna, Costanzo. - In: JOURNAL OF ARCHITECTURAL ENGINEERING. - ISSN 1076-0431. - 29:2(2023), p. 4023009. [10.1061/JAEIED.AEENG-1533]

Crossed Effect of Acoustics on Thermal Comfort and Productivity in Workplaces: A Case Study in Virtual Reality

Latini, Arianna;Di Loreto, Samantha;Di Giuseppe, Elisa
;
D’Orazio, Marco;Di Perna, Costanzo
2023-01-01

Abstract

During the last decades, virtual reality (VR) has been devoted to supporting research in the architecture, engineering, and construction sectors because of its ability to provide multisensory three-dimensional (3D) environments. However, the use of immersive virtual environments (IVEs) in the design of the built environment is still in its infancy, and it is limited to visually designed spaces. In addition, a fundamental challenge lies in improving the sense of hearing. The effective simulation of the built environment with an overall realistic perception will support designers when identifying the influence of design decisions and building acoustics on individuals, therefore, properly designing acoustic strategies. In this study, five disrupting sound sources were selected to create a binaural soundtrack that was integrated within a virtual office environment to evaluate the effectiveness of the model (i.e., ecological validity) and the effects of acoustics on user comfort and cognitive performance (i.e., criterion validity). Independent measure design research was employed. In total, 104 participants performed working memory, inhibition, and task-switching tests under quiet (Q) or noise (N) conditions when the indoor air temperature remained constant. The results showed that the modeled virtual office created an excellent level of presence and immersivity with no significant cybersickness disorders (i.e., ecological validity). Ambient noise disrupted work efficiency with a relevant decrease in performance in each cognitive test (i.e., criterion validity). The sound environment was assessed as uncomfortable, chaotic, and boring. In addition, it negatively impacted the subjects’ thermal comfort vote (TCV). These results suggested the adequacy of IVE when providing an accurate representation of the variables measured; therefore, it supported effective user-centered design analysis and strategies.
2023
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11566/312352
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