What is Apparent Temperature?

Apparent temperature, often referred to as the “feels-like” temperature, brings together information about temperature, wind speed, and humidity,  to calculate  how the ambient temperature feels to the average person.

The human body’s perception of temperature is influenced by its ability to dissipate heat, which varies under different environmental conditions and this is why those variables change our perception of how the air feels.

When presented separately, the “hot” and “cold” components of Apparent Temperature are more commonly referred to as  Heat Index (HI) and  Wind Chill (WC).High humidity levels inhibit the evaporation of sweat, the body’s primary mechanism for cooling itself, making it feel hotter than the actual air temperature. Wind increases the rate of heat loss from the body, making the air feel colder than the actual temperature.

  • Heat Index applies in hot conditions and takes into account temperature and humidity. It is typically calculated when  temperatures reach 80F or warmer.
  • Wind Chill Factor is used in cold conditions(40F or less) and considers temperature and wind speed.

What is the Impact of Temperature?

Apparent temperature, which combines temperature with other weather elements like humidity and wind, offers a more precise measure of how we feel the weather.

This perception is critical for:

Safety Considerations: Extreme conditions, such as low wind chills, heighten risks of frostbite and hypothermia, limiting safe exposure times. Conversely, high heat index values necessitate measures to prevent heat stress, signaling the importance of adapting to temperature effects to safeguard health.

Operational Planning and Risk Management: Recognizing the actual “feels like” temperature aids in making informed decisions for event scheduling, work operations, and emergency preparedness, ensuring that activities are conducted under conditions that minimize health risks.

Advanced Tools for Heat Stress Measurement: The Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT) is a sophisticated alternative for assessing heat stress, incorporating temperature, humidity, wind speed, sun angle, and cloud cover to guide adjustments in outdoor activities, hydration breaks, and protective clothing to enhance safety in hot conditions