Paper Conference

Proceedings of eSim 2014: 8th Conference of IBPSA-Canada


Applications of Large Scale Solar Modeling in the Built Environment

Ryan Danks

Abstract: This paper describes the development and applications of a simulation engine developed by the author to rapidly and accurately predict solar insolation within the urban realm. This tools works within the finitevolume framework of the open source computational fluid dynamics (CFD) package OpenFOAM; allowing tight integration of solar results with CFD analyses and the ability to leverage existing pre and post processing tools and processes. The utility combines a fast geometric analysis of sunlight ray paths with advanced modeling techniques to provide direct and diffuse solar loads throughout the study domain. The output of this utility has been compared to that of the industry standard RADIANCE engine (used via the DIVA-for-Rhino software package) and has been found to match RADIANCE predictions of annual solar insolation within 10%. The utility also leverages the same domain decomposition schemes used by OpenFOAM, allowing for simple parallelization, significantly reducing run times compared to RADIANCE.
Pages: 110 - 122