New wind chill equivalent temperature index

NOAA’s National Weather Service new Wind Chill Equivalent Temperature (WCET) index is based on a human face model and calculates the dangers from winter winds and temperatures below the freezing point (NOAA 2011). WCET is an apparent temperature index. WCET calculates wind speed at an average height of 5 feet, or 1.5 m (typical height of an adult human face) based on readings from the national standard height of 33 ft, or 10 m (typical height of an anemometer) and incorporates heat transfer theory, regarding heat loss from the body to its surroundings, during cold and breezy/windy days. It uses a consistent standard for skin tissue resistance and assumes no impact from the sun (i.e.clear night sky) (Osczevski and Bluestein 2005). In a recent evaluation of the WCET, Shitzer and Tikuisis (2012) suggest to improve the reliability of the values predicted by the WCET by applying a whole body thermoregulation model to evaluate human exposure to cold-windy conditions.

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