Anyone who’s ever worked in an office environment knows fighting with your co-workers over the office thermostat is one of the peskiest things about the work place. The lady in accounting is too cold, the young guy in the mailroom thinks it’s too warm, or sometimes the air conditioning and heating systems are entirely broken and leave the whole office in shambles. Maybe everyone will stop arguing for the ideal office temperature if they just owned this Tempronics Cooler Heater Chair that can be adjusted to individually preferred thermal comfort.
This Tempronics chair come with a built-in air conditioning system that the user can set to their comfort level. The chair can be supplied with as much power as a laptop computer, reportedly consuming less than 75 watts. It is not clear whether the chair is corded or charged by battery, but it does contain five wheels, an adjustable seat level, and arm rests for your swiveling needs. Despite the picture, the Tempronics Cooler Heater Chair will not glow in particular colors to connote temperature. Which is fine, since we can’t see what we’re sitting on anyways.
In a testing, Tempronics found that the ideal temperature for the average person is anywhere between 61 to 84 degrees Fahrenheit, the range which the chair delightfully offers. Setting the temperature between this range can also help save electricity by powering just the chair as opposed to an entire air condition or heating system to regulate a larger space.
“If the thermostat is set to 63 in the winter and 83 in the summer, the HVAC energy savings compared to normal operation will exceed 30%. This chair can make people comfortable even beyond this temperature range,” said Professor Edward Arens, director of the Center for the Built Environment at University of California Berkeley.
We can see the chair being useful in an office environment where people all have different body temperatures but can’t whip out an extra blanket or put on or take off clothes like they could when they’re at home. Even though the chair costs $1100 apiece ($800 each if you buy in bulk), this investment could pay off to eliminate energy-sucking thermostats to keep the a smaller office comfortable. Getting up to go use the bathroom or get coffee, however, might be a bit of a shift. Would this be one way to keep employees steady and working at their desks?
For those who are interested in similar technology outside of the office, Tempronics also offers a line of bedding and other types of seating to warm or cool any part of your home. The company is currently applying their thermoelectric designs to warm or cool anything from car seats to vests to use the technology as a way to provide physical therapy.