What is the impact of solar orientation on building curtain wall design?

Brian Ortiz - August 25, 2021

Medium span (30 seconds)

What is the impact of solar orientation  on building curtain wall design?

Project Location:

Simulation Scale:



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

This study examines solar orientation during particular periods of time throughout the year. The graphic demonstrates December 21st through March 21st. The data presented directly illustrates the solar impact on the proposed building through geographical coordinates and annualized weather data files. The images allow us to begin to achieve a performance based design by analyzing heat gain, glare control, footcandle levels, and curtain wall design. The building is made up of two levels with the first level being curtain wall window glazing with a horizontal aluminum sunshade and the second level consisting of a UniQuad translucent wall panel system. The study allows us to see how much sunlight is allowed through the UniQuad system and examine the horizontal sunshade effects on the curtain wall glazing.

What type of graphic is this?

  • Other

Design Variables

  • Building Massing
  • Building Materials
  • Glass U-value / SHGC
  • Window shading/sun control

Is this part of the ASHRAE-209 cycle?

What tools were used for the simulation analysis?

  • Autodesk Insight

What tools did you use to create the graphic?

  • Direct Software Output

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

The graphics presented allowed our team to easily analyze the effects of the curtain wall design during the entire year. The data outcome let u strengthen the design moving forward by adjusting the curtain wall façade, and illustrate exactly how much direct sunlight is coming in. We can now confidently provide a performance based reasoning to design.

Is there anything else you would like to mention?

- Tools used for simulation and graphics: Revit 2020 with Insight lighting/solar

Included in the competition:

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

July 15, 2021-September 20, 2021