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Sometimes I forget that we live in an ocean of air. I take for granted that the open space in front of me, or filling our buildings, has a profound affect on my very existance. The gasseous medium we swim through affects thermal comfort, energy movement, and air quality through complex molecular interactions described most accurately by fluid dynamics models but that are relatively intangible on a daily basis. How amazing is it then to see that our bodies are in constant interaction with the air around us. To the atmosphere, the human body is a giant heat plume.
The video below shows the human body as it heats the surrounding air. Watch as plumes of warm air rise from the head, face, shoulders, hands. As you watch think about how much heat our buildings shed into the environment when the inside temperature is maintained at 72°F and the exterior temperature is 32°F!