The planet Vulcan has on average hotter climate than Earth and there's that saying of "hot like Vulcan". Yet we see Vulcans wearing long thick robes on their home world. So when they come to somewhere like San Francisco that does not have a hot climate, aren't they cold? Also, does the high humidity of some regions of Earth make them sick? Or are they less sensitive or more adaptable? Vulcans living on Earth do not seem to wear more clothes than humans. I guess they might be quite adaptable, for humans are also quite adaptable to temperature. At least for me, it only takes a few weeks to adapt to a new climate, though I have met people who forever miss the climate of their hometowns.

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    The only time Spock ever complained was in the TOS episode "The Deadly Years", while he was suffering from the aging syndrome. One might therefore assume that while Vulcans are adapted to the heat of their homeworld, they are somewhat indifferent to cooler environments when healthy. Although Vulcan is hotter than Earth during the day, no mention is made of typical nighttime temperatures on Vulcan, and therefore the full temperature range to which a Vulcan ought to be adapted.
    – Anthony X
    Commented Jun 6, 2020 at 23:31
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    Lots of the EU novels mention that Vulcan-run ships are typically warmer than other mixed race Federation ships.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 6, 2020 at 23:46
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    @KaseyChang - Spock is, of course, half-human
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 7:23
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    If they were cold, they would probably not show it or discuss it, so you wouldn't know.
    – Basya
    Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 7:29
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    We don't know in-universe what fabric Vulcan clothes are made of, for all we know the fabric they're made of could way way more thermally efficient than Earth fabrics Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 8:56

2 Answers 2


Possibly, but they probably don't react to it.

Vulcans are known to be able to survive for several days without water, many more days without food, can go without sleep for two weeks, are stronger, faster, and are more emotionally controlled than humans under normal conditions.

These characteristics are described in Wikipedia and Memory Alpha.

Vulcans complain rarely, and because of all these reasons, it is unlikely for them to feel cold--they might feel cold, but could be more immune to it than humans if they were on another planet.

Additionally, it is almost proven that Starfleet uniforms have the ability to adjust their temperatures for whoever is wearing them--that was brought up in this question.

So it is highly likely that clothes designed for interstellar travel also have built-in temperature controls, and normal people can wear them everywhere.

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    This feels like guesswork. We know, for example, that Vulcans tend to silently put up with humans stinking. That doesn't mean that they don't smell it, they just don't complain about it.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 21:21
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    @Valorum I have changed the answer so it is less guesswork, and more of an "educated guess," including evidence. Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 21:25
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    @Valorum Humans often do the same. Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 23:01
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    @InvisibleTrihedron - Hooomans do many odd things. Like testing nuclear weapons in their atmosphere. And root beer.
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 7, 2020 at 23:22
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    @LambdaMoses Sadly, it doesn't answer the question of, "How do so many planets inhabited by intelligent life forms have atmospheres similar to Earth, and thus compatible to humans? Commented Jun 9, 2020 at 21:02

In TOS "The deadly Years":

Captain's log, stardate 3579.4. The Enterprise personnel who beamed down to the planet's surface, Doctor McCoy, Engineer Scott, Mister Spock, Lieutenant Galway, and myself are all showing definite signs of aging. Only Ensign Chekov appears to be normal.

In the scene in Sickbay which immediately follows that log:

MCCOY: I'm doing what I can. (to Spock) You're perfectly healthy.

SPOCK: (sitting up) I must differ with you, Doctor. I'm having difficulty concentrating, which is most disturbing, my eye sight appears to be failing, and the normal temperature of the ship seems to me to be increasingly cold.

MCCOY: I did not say you weren't affected, Mister Spock. You are perfectly healthy, that is, for any normal Vulcan on the high side of a hundred.

Considering that Spock should be only in his thirties, he should have aged at least 60 or 70 years.

[digression about Spock's life expectancy. Earlier in that scene:

MCCOY: All of us who went down to the surface, with the exception of Chekov, are aging at various rates. Approximately thirty years for each day. I don't know what's causing it. A virus, a bacteria, or evil spirits, but I'm trying to find out.

KIRK: Spock, could I ask for some figures?

SPOCK: (looking about the same as usual) Based on what Doctor McCoy gave me, I estimate that physically we each have less than a week to live. Also, since our mental faculties are aging faster than our bodies, we will be little better than mental vegetables in considerably lesser time.

Approximately 30 years per day or 1.25 years per hour implies that none of them could have expected to live as much as 210 more years, which seems reasonable.

Since there are 168 hours in a week, and each of them had been hyper aging for an unspecified number of hours, we can make some guess at Spock's life expectancy. If, for example, Spock aged 1.25 years per hour, and aged at least 60 to 70 years, for each hour that he could expect to live, his normal life expectancy would have been up to 210 more years after aging to more than 100 years old!

Obviously there is something wrong with those calculations. McCoy said Spock was healthy for a Vulcan over 100, but Spock is half human.

Late Commodore Stocker asked Spock to take command of the Enterprise:

SPOCK: On what grounds, Commodore?

STOCKER: On the grounds that the captain, because of his affliction, is unable to perform his duties.

SPOCK: Need I remind you, sir, that I too have contracted the same affliction?

STOCKER: Yes, but you're a Vulcan. You have a much greater life span. You show the affects to a much smaller degree.

SPOCK: I'm half human, sir. My physical reflexes are down, my mental capacity is reduced. I tire easily. No, sir. I am not fit for command.

STOCKER: Well, if you are not, with your Vulcan physique, then obviously Captain Kirk cannot be.

So maybe Spock, who was probably in his thirties, had aged only 30 to 40 years to become the equivalent of a Vulcan over 100 years old. If Spock aged 30 to 40 years of his half Vulcan life expectancy in 24 to 48 hours, he would have aged about 0.625 to 1.666 years per hour, and thus he could have up to 105 to 279.9 years of normal life expectancy left if he could survive up to 168 more hours of hyper aging. That seems more plausible.]

Some time and several scenes later:

SPOCK: I have a question for the doctor. (Kirk leaves) Doctor, the ship's temperature is increasingly uncomfortable for me. I've adjusted the environment in my quarters to one hundred twenty five degrees, which is at least tolerable. However, I

MCCOY: Well, I see I'm not going to be making any house calls on you.

SPOCK: I wondered if perhaps there was something which could lower my sensitivity to cold.

MCCOY: I'm not a magician, Spock, just an old country doctor.

SPOCK: Yes. As I always suspected. (leaves)

125 degrees Fahrenheit is 51.6667 degrees Celsius, and 125 degrees Celsius is 257 degrees Fahrenheit.

I think 125 degrees Fahrenheit would be much more plausible, since Spock was obviously used to even higher temperatures. I note that 125 degrees Fahrenheit would be about 50 degrees Fahrenheit higher than a human ship's normal temperature.

If the Vulcans who spend time on Earth and on Earth spaceships and installations are all young and healthy, the equivalents in age of human teenagers and twenty something and thirty something persons, they may be able to tolerate temperatures that humans find comfortable for long times.

I note that Spock was already stating that the ship's temperature was uncomfortable for him when McCoy said that his condition was equal to a healthy to a Vulcan on the high side of 100. In "Journey to Babel" Spock's father Sarek, aged 102, and his human wife Amanda, travel on the Enterprise and share quarters. In the TNG episode "Sarek", Sarek spent some time on the Enterprise D when his age was apparently 202, and his second wife Perrin, also a human, apparently shared his quarters. How Sarek and his human wives managed to be comfortable at the same time is a mystery to me.

  • You're not taking into account that he's 50% human. Can you provide any evidence that back this up from the standpoint of a full-blooded Vulcan like Tuvok?
    – Valorum
    Commented Jun 8, 2020 at 16:30
  • So the variable-temperature uniforms theory has potential? Commented Jun 9, 2020 at 21:08
  • Re: 125° - Out of universe, in the 60s very few people would have thought to quote a temperature in Celsius. I think it's fairly safe to say the writers intended it to be 125°F.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Oct 15, 2020 at 18:33

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