Zero Carbon Design, explores how the use of Integrated Environmental Solutions software can be used and applied to new and existing building models, to produce accurate simulations of thermal and solar properties, and allow us to adjust the model to achieve better results.
This allows us remove the guess work from design or based on precedents. Using this software we will be able to predetermine the performance based on accurate simulations.
In order to be able to run simulations using the software correctly, our first 4 weeks concentrate on being taught the software and its many components.
As with learning any software there is a steep learning curve but it is vital that we learn the correct procedure now in order to create accurate simulations later.
1st session– getting to grips with basic 3D modelling tools that the software uses. –Our first impression is that although there are similarities with some architectural CAD systems, the modelling capabilities are stripped back for simplicity.
2nd session– delves a little more into the detail that can be specified.
- Assigning materials- when creating a wall in the modelling, you have to imagine it to be the internal face of the wall only and as such has no depth to the drawing. You must assign a material, or more appropriately wall type build up.
- Editing Materials- Within this option you can specify particular material properties taken from a database, download specification from manufacturers websites, or input the data manually. This allows you to accurately calculate specific U-values and thicknesses of walls, roofs, glazing, floor slabs etc.
- Using Apache Sin (dynamic simulation) we were able to alter dates to run our first basic simulation.
- We could use V.I.S.T.A. to create visualisations using the simulation data, including shadow casting.
By the end of the second session it become apparent that the software is designed in a way that the detail required is assigned after, rather than during the modelling process which explains the simple control experienced in our first session.
After the learning modules ended . In order to show what progress we have made at the Co:Lab reviews we decided to make a power point presentation summarising the method and process involved.
There was a lot of information to relay so we tried to break it up by including both a videos of us working with the software , along with edited screen shots highlighting key areas of information.
We tried to keep the presentation concise with minimal on screen text.
We broke the presentation down to the following headings
- Basic modelling
- Assigning construction materials
- Setting location
- Sun Path Diagrams
- Solar calculations
- Adding context and shadow casting
- Apache Simulation
- Radiance IES
We deliberately laid out the presentation in this order to give an accurate account of what order the software is used.
We started with creating a simple model and worked with this all the way through the headings until our end point of radiance images.