CFD study of the thermal environment around a human body: A review

N. P. Gao, Jianlei Niu

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

129 Citations (Scopus)


Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of thermal manikins can provide detailed information which it is impossible to obtain from experiments. In this review several issues from CFD studies of thermal manikins are discussed, such as geometric complexity of computational thermal manikins (CTMs), selection of turbulence models, grid generation and boundary conditions. Calculation of CTMs with simple geometry requires less computational resource but a more anthropomorphic geometry can provide more accurate results. In the simulations using complex geometric representations of the human body the computational domain is discretised by body-fitted co-ordinates or unstructured grids. The total number of cells can reach the quantitative magnitude of 1 million. The simulation results about airflow field, radiative and convective heat transfer and contaminant distribution from different researchers are compared. Further developments in the use of these simulations are proposed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-16
Number of pages12
JournalIndoor and Built Environment
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2005


  • Computational thermal manikin
  • Contaminant distribution
  • Heat transfer
  • Thermal plume
  • Turbulence models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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