What is the impact of skylight design on daylighting quality? (Competition Winner)

Misha Semenov - September 20, 2021

Medium span (30 seconds)

What is the impact of skylight design on daylighting quality? (Competition Winner)

Project Location:

Simulation Scale:



What is this graphic showing? Describe the different parts of the graphic and how it communicates the data.

This graphic documents Centerbrook Architects' iterative design process in arriving at a final skylight layout (shown enlarged at top) for the central double-height reading room of the New Canaan Library. We had to balance the placement of mechanical equipment on the roof with the need for good natural lighting in the space. The diagram shows spatial daylight autonomy (here defined as >200 lux, per requirements for library spaces) and glare (simplified to >2000 lux) for five different options, as measured with Ladybug using daysim and radiance. Daylight autonomy is shown as the purple line on the line graph, and is represented in the top grid visualization for each option; glare is shown as the orange line and the grid visualization running along the bottom. Performing this analysis allowed us to identify a "sweet spot" option with a good balance of daylighting with glare. It also helped us see the daylighting impact of features such as the sloped reflective ceilings we designed around each skylight.

What type of graphic is this?

  • Analysis grid
  • Diagram

Design Variables

  • Building Massing
  • Passive strategies
  • Window shading/sun control

Is this part of the ASHRAE-209 cycle?

What tools were used for the simulation analysis?

  • Ladybug Tools

What tools did you use to create the graphic?

  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe Photoshop

What was successful and/or unique about the graphic in how it communicates information?

Unifying the mathematical precision of grid-based daylight analysis with architectural representation techniques that allow the spatial ramifications of each design option to be understood, the graphic helps the reader comprehend the three-dimensional design and measured performance tradeoffs between different options.

Is there anything else you would like to mention?

Thank you for the opportunity to submit to this competition!

Additional credits and other contributors:

Huge thanks to the whole Centerbrook design team on this project under principal Jim Childress, including Mark Herter, Ken Cleveland, Anna Shakun, Erik Lubeck, Jiaying Bai, and Katie Watts.

Included in the competition:

Daylighting and Glare with Side Lighting
Daylighting and Glare with Side Lighting

July 15, 2021-September 20, 2021