Daylighting design and simulation : ease of use analysis of digital tools for architects

Panitz, Konrad & Garcia-Hansen, Veronica Ruth (2013) Daylighting design and simulation : ease of use analysis of digital tools for architects. In Manley, Karen, Kajewski, Stephen L., & Hampson, Keith D. (Eds.) Proceedings of the 19th CIB World Building Congress, Brisbane 2013 : Construction and Society, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, Brisbane, QLD, pp. 1-13.

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Good daylighting design in buildings not only provides a comfortable luminous environment, but also delivers energy savings and comfortable and healthy environments for building occupants. Yet, there is still no consensus on how to assess what constitutes good daylighting design. Currently amongst building performance guidelines, Daylighting factors (DF) or minimum illuminance values are the standard; however, previous research has shown the shortcomings of these metrics. New computer software for daylighting analysis contains new more advanced metrics for daylighting (Climate Base Daylight Metrics-CBDM). Yet, these tools (new metrics or simulation tools) are not currently understood by architects and are not used within architectural firms in Australia.

A survey of architectural firms in Brisbane showed the most relevant tools used by industry. The purpose of this paper is to assess and compare these computer simulation tools and new tools available architects and designers for daylighting. The tools are assessed in terms of their ease of use (e.g. previous knowledge required, complexity of geometry input, etc.), efficiency (e.g. speed, render capabilities, etc.) and outcomes (e.g. presentation of results, etc. The study shows tools that are most accessible for architects, are those that import a wide variety of files, or can be integrated into the current 3d modelling software or package. These software’s need to be able to calculate for point in times simulations, and annual analysis. There is a current need in these software solutions for an open source program able to read raw data (in the form of spreadsheets) and show that graphically within a 3D medium. Currently, development into plug-in based software’s are trying to solve this need through third party analysis, however some of these packages are heavily reliant and their host program. These programs however which allow dynamic daylighting simulation, which will make it easier to calculate accurate daylighting no matter which modelling platform the designer uses, while producing more tangible analysis today, without the need to process raw data.

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ID Code: 58526
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: daylighting, daylight simulation, digital tools, Climatic base daylight metrics
ISBN: 9780987554215
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > ARCHITECTURE (120100) > Architectural Science and Technology (incl. Acoustics Lighting Structure and Ecologically Sustainable Design) (120104)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > Schools > School of Design
Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Queensland University of Technology. Authors and/or their employers retain copyright of the papers printed in these Proceedings.
Copyright Statement: Digital copies of these Proceedings will be provided free of charge to Congress delegates by way of USB Flash Drive. The Proceedings will also be available online at the Congress website (, the QUT website ( and the SBENRC website ( for a minimum period of 12 months following the Congress. This online resource will be accessible free of charge to Congress delegates from the commencement of the Congress, and will be accessible free of charge to non-delegates 3 months after the Congress concludes.
Deposited On: 22 Mar 2013 00:20
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2014 18:32

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