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Passive Design

BIM for Architecture, Engineering, and Construction Curriculum

Exercise 3.1.1: Finding the Optimum Building Orientation

In this exercise, students will learn how to:

  • Prepare BIM models for energy analysis.Export model geometry using the gbXML file format.
  • Import gbXML model data into analysis tools, such as Autodesk®  Ecotect Analysis software  and Autodesk®  Green Building Studio® web service.
  • Use the Ecotect Analysis weather tool to find the optimum building orientation based on solar effects.
  • Use Green Building Studio design alternatives to determine the optimum orientation based on energy use.
Figure 3.1.1 - Weather tool showing the optimum orientation of a structure

Video Tutorial

Student Exercise

Download Unit3_Lesson1_Exercise1_Start.zip: Imperial or Metric
Revit, Autodesk Ecotect Analysis 2011
  • Find the optimum building orientation for this BIM model of a typical classroom unit using the Autodesk Ecotect Analysis weather tool. For this analysis, assume the school will be located in Detroit, Michigan.
  • Use Green Building Studio to determine the optimum orientation for the same classroom building and location to minimize the total annual energy cost. Create several design alternatives to evaluate the impact of rotating the BIM model by 15-degree increments.
  • Repeat these two analyses to find the optimum orientation recommended by each tool if the classroom is located in Phoenix, Arizona.

 

Figure 3.1.2 - Using design alternatives in Green Building Studio to evaluate the total annual energy cost for different building orientations

Exercise 3.1.2: Comparing Massing and Shape Alternatives

In this exercise, students will learn how to:

  • Use simple BIM models to evaluate the energy use of different building massing and shape alternatives.
  • Use Green Building Studio to estimate the total annual energy use for each alternative.
  • Explore the impacts of different massing strategies on fuel use versus electricity uses.
  • Use Green Building Studio design alternatives to determine the optimum orientation based on energy use.
Figure 3.1.3 - Comparison of two BIM models with similar area but different shapes

Video Tutorial



Student Exercise

Download Unit3_Lesson1_Exercise2_Start.zip: Imperial or Metric
Revit, Autodesk Green Building Studio
  • Use Green Building Studio to analyze a third massing and shape alternative with the same floor area and number of classrooms configured as a two-story building. Compare the total annual energy cost as well as the fuel use and electricity use to the two alternatives explored in the tutorial. For this analysis, assume the school will be located in Detroit, Michigan.
  • Repeat the analysis of all three alternatives to evaluate the fuel use and electricity use tradeoffs if the school is located in Phoenix, Arizona.

 

Figure 3.1.4 -  Energy use comparison in Green Building Studio for two building shape alternatives orientations

Exercise 3.1.3: Designing Architectural Shading Features

In this exercise, students will learn how to:

  • Use Autodesk®  Revit®,/sup>  software to evaluate the impact of sun and shadows on a building design.
  • Design and evaluate architectural features to optimize the use of sunlight throughout the year.
  • Estimate potential energy savings of proposed design features using Green Building Studio.
Figure 3.1.5 - Using shadows to evaluate shading design options

Video Tutorial

Student Exercise

Download Unit3_Lesson1_Exercise3_Start.zip: Imperial or Metric
Revit, Autodesk Green Building Studio
  • For the given BIM model of a typical classroom layout, explore roof overhang and shading design options to optimize the use of sunlight throughout the year—allowing sunlight to warm the room during the winter, but blocking the sunlight during the warm summer months. For this analysis, assume the classroom is located in Detroit, Michigan.
  • Export your proposed new design as a gbXML file for analysis in Green Building Studio. Analyze the energy used by your new design and compare the results to the estimate for the earlier version of building (analyzed in exercise 3.1.1).

 

Figure 3.1.6 -  Typical classroom unit with sunpath and shadows displayed