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Numerical results are presented for the heat loss from a room, heated by radiant panels, as a function of wall reflectivity. For these calculations, a computer model was developed for the transient heat transfer within an arbitrary closed room with radiant and convective heat exchange between the panel and room surfaces, and conductive heat transfer through the walls. In the model, the room air temperature was initially set back, while the mean radiant temperature was adjusted with the radiant panels to keep the operative temperature, or comfort level, constant.

The results suggest that walls reflective in the infrared can reduce the steady state heat loss to the ambient by reducing the wall temperatures, yet the walls radiate at higher equivalent blackbody temperatures since radiant heat from the panels is reflected by the walls. Future work may be needed to develop inexpensive wall paints or papers that are reflective in the IR, but appear normal in the visible spectrum.

Units: I-P