UBC Undergraduate Research

An investigation into radiant carpet personal heater Sung, Brian; Song, Sein; Fadaei, Payam


The SEEDS (Social Ecological Economic Development Studies) project is done every year in APSC 261 to study real world sustainability (SEEDS UBC, 2010). With difficulty on controlling temperature of large buildings to satisfy all the occupants, personal heaters are used by some occupants. However, use of personal heaters demands more electricity. An investigation is made to find an optimal radiant carpet personal heater to replace the originally used convection heater. Assessment on choosing the new heater is based on the triple bottom line analysis which looks into economic, social and environmental aspects that it impacts. Our product, Foot Warmer™ saves $45.60 per year compared to the convection heater and it has a payback period of 1.2 years. The heater impacts office workers in a positive way with sustainability awareness. The radiant heater uses 1410 W less than the convection heater and produces 14kg less CO2 emissions in the production stage. The main methods of investigation were conducting a survey, testing Foot Warmer™, and interviewing office workers. Secondary sources such as articles, magazines, and newspaper were used to gather technical data to compare specifications between Foot Warmer™ and the convection heater. Foot Warmer™ is a decent candidate for a more sustainable personal heating system. An insulation layer such as cardboard is recommended to be put between Foot Warmer™ and carpet or wood floors to prevent the floor from cracking or discoloring. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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