Volume 6, Issue 2 (February 2009)
Design and Results of a Study to Measure Environmental Factors in Airliner Cabins and to Assess the Health and Comfort of Passengers and Crew Using Surveys
The design and results of a study to relate human comfort and health to the airliner cabin environment are described. Rationale for studying the airliner cabin environment, the scope of the study, the experimental design, and flight selection are presented. This study was unique in including both in-flight passenger and crew surveys and a variety of measurements of the physical and chemical environment in the cabins of airliners in revenue service. It was found that, even with a very small sample, various physical parameters were statistically related to reported human comfort as measured by the survey instrument. For example, higher levels of carbon dioxide in the cabin during cruising were associated with lower ratings of the overall air quality in the cabin, less satisfaction with the odor in the cabin, and less satisfaction with the freshness of the air in the cabin. This paper focuses on the process for developing the study design and results from the survey. Companion papers discuss the results of the cabin chemical and physical environmental measurements.