Whether you are designing new constructions or deep energy retrofits, the basis for an energy efficient design is an understanding of the climate that you are working in. Local climate has has always been one of the main factors shaping vernacular architectural design throughout the world, and, ultimately, the goal of any building is to protect the occupant from external climate factors. Therefore, an effective thermal envelope of a building should bridge the gap between the desired health and comfort conditions for the occupants and external weather conditions.
As in its previous version, Archicad 17 comes with a built-in energy evaluation tool, that allows designers to develop the building energy concept from the preliminary design phase. The line that divides architectural design and energy simulation seems to be getting thinner and thinner. On one hand, this Graphisoft approach is no doubt cutting edge. However, some large doubts remain:
Designing with daylight in mind not only allows for a more comfortable interior space, but it can also give you substantial savings in energy consumption. By integrating ArchiCAD’s BIM technology with Velux’s Daylight Visualizer, architects can now precisely simulate daylighting in buildings as early as the very first steps of preliminary design.
Graphisoft has just released the preview videos for their new ArchiCAD version 16, and we are pretty excited about it here at Emu Architects. Enrico Bonilauri has written an extensive assessment of the newly integrated energy analysis features (basically incorporating EcoDesigner) over on our Italian blog. I’ll attempt to translate his thoughts into English here for our international readers: