One among the foremost responsible things you can do as an architect is to concentrate which , for me, always begins with the site: the climate,geography, wind patterns, and in fact , the Sun.
Architecture is nothing without light and it's perhaps the foremost important organizing force for our work.
It's always where I start my site analysis,by diagramming the trail of the Sun as an overlay on the location plan, and I'll get into the specifics on how I do that during a minute. The predominant solar orientation - where the foremost direct sunlight comes from - here within the hemisphere , is that of the south.
So, the more of our building which will facesouth the more efficiently we're ready to capture and use the Sun for natural light, and passive heating, and even cooling as we'll see during a minute. This approach not only saves energy by reducing lighting, heating, and cooling costs, but it is also better for our own health and well-being. For this project, the lot was sloping andrather long with the neighboring residents accessible to the north.
The views to the ocean were all off to the east. With an east facing site like this you're faced with a dilemma: does one orient the long axis of the building north and south to offer the client the view of the ocean they requested - from every room – or, does one deny the water view in favor of a more sensible solar aspect? Truthfully, I wanted it both ways.
The answer I designed divided the program into public and personal wings, each oriented with their long axes east and west as you'll see here within the site plan. This gave me the long flank of the building to gather sunlight and that I could still orient a number of the foremost important spaces, the main bedroom , the front room , and a guest suite, toward the water view.
The, “every room has got to have a view of the ocean” may be a common request where I practice; it's one among the most draws of shopping for a bit of waterfront property obviously. But, I always attempt to advocate for a deeper exploration of the location and an interweaving of the architecture into the larger whole. This site has many other features to explore additionally to the water view. By using the circulation to stitch the building volumes together, I could continually change the attitude as my client moved throughout their house and their day. Arriving home they might head east and therefore the south then east again and this combined with a changing horizon line and sets of interior steps, which mirrored the sloping site, allowed each space to capture a special perspective on the location .
Now, let's dig a touch deeper on the impact of the Sun on this specific design solution. The plan is laid out as three linear barseach stepping down with the topography toward the water. An initial approach could be to easily extrude the bar and put a flat roof thereon , but this is often less dynamic; it doesn't really react to the solar exposure in any specific way. But, by learning the southern eave of the roof like this and adding a glazed clerestory within the void this became a very efficient device for letting in sunlight on the southern exposure.
The higher you'll locate a window on a wall,the deeper it'll admit daylight into the inside .
As we glance at the section you'll see another solar advantage of the shed roof, it allows daylight to travel by the roof form and reflect off the taller northerly wing. Because the private wing contained tons more room than the general public wing - five bedrooms, a laundry, a library, and a mudroom area - we had to style it as a two-story volume. the location analysis made it clear that placingit to the northerly fringe of the location would confer variety of benefits , it blocked the views to the neighboring residence, it served as a wind block from the tough northerly winds on the location , and if we made it two stories tall we could use it to assist bounce light back to the northerly face of the living wing as you'll see here. So, I'd encourage you to believe a variety of uses when it involves sunlight and the way it interacts together with your architecture.
How are you able to exploit it understanding that buildings can absorb, block, filter, consume, store, and reflect sunlight? Alright, now that you're up to hurry on the larger design moves it's finally time for the small print . Clerestories efficiently daylight interior spaces as we've said, but alongside all that natural light comes radiation too, which may quickly overheat spaces and make them uncomfortable, which is simply the other of what we're trying to do with our design. And, here's where the small print matters. to regulate the sunshine and warmth on southern exposures you'll predominantly want to be considering horizontal elements for screening,that's because the Sun moves from a coffee altitude within the winter to a high one within the summer.
Horizontal objects act just like the brim of a hat to shade the building and it is the high angle Sun that presents the foremost danger of overheating while the low angle Sun is sweet for us here during a cold climate, we would like to let within the winter Sun and use it to offset our heating costs. Horizontal elements can include an overhang,a sunshade, awnings, screens, louvers, or brise soleil. Because our design was so linear,horizontal louvers seemed the foremost appropriate. Now, we could have just matched the coursing on the siding and called it good but there's more thereto than that.
The spacing and depth of the horizontal louvers are often tuned to your exact geographic location. Why not, right? This is often where the Sun charts are available handy. Now, tons of individuals are asking about these and I'll quickly show you ways they work. There are essentially four dates within the civil year that you simply care about when considering the Sun's impact on your architecture.
The solstices in December and June are the points when the Sun is at its extreme arc, either high or low, then there's the equinoxes in March and September, these are the midway - kind of transition - points between the 2 extremes.
to style the depth and spacing of the louver blades you'll be wanting to understand the altitude of the Sun at noon for every of the four important dates. During this cold climate we will cash in on the lower angle of the winter Sun for passive solar heating and our design can keep the upper angle hotter sunlight call at the summer. Now, there is a really fantastic podcast by the Australian architect Amelia Lee called the Undercover Architect and she or he does a deepdive on this subject - i feel it's something sort of a six-part series - which covers each different exposure and the way you would possibly treat it together with your architecture and the way that impacts design. Now, she has her North and South's all flipped around because, well, she's Australian.
But seriously, it's rather well done. you would like to follow her if you are not already. Links are within the description below. Okay, the subsequent step is to require these angles and plot these values on your drawing. Remember the angle is above 0 degrees which is - for our purposes - the horizon. So, naturally 90 degrees would be straight overhead. So, here in Maine it's something tons but 90 degrees. Okay, so these are our values for the important calendar dates and given these angles I start with some basic assumptions about my louver design then I begin tweaking as necessary to urge the intended effect.
Now, you'll use SketchUp or Revit and I adore the app Sunseeker and therefore the real-time augmented reality especially for renovations.
These tools will all assist you study and understand Sun angles far more quickly - and maybe intuitively - than sketching it out by hand. But, for details like these I find sketching to be the foremost tactile and enjoyable thanks to design. Now, here's what we ended up with for our design and you'll see that it balances admitting ample winter Sun and blocking out the highangle summer Sun. The remainder of the year I attempted to balance it out and there is some little bit of magic between the spacing, material efficiencies, and therefore the depth of the louvers, and for that you're going to just need to fiddle with it to urge it right. The more materially efficient you'll be,the less costly the Sun shading system is going to be to construct. Now, there are tons of other ways we could have done this including addressing it from the inside , but the foremost efficient thanks to keep the overheating and glare issues from becoming a drag inside is to stay the Sun From striking the glass the primary place which means an external solution.
Now, the last item I'll mention about the solar design here is that passively heating spaces this manner allows you to require advantage of the stack effect too if you add operable windows up high as we did in our clerestory. because the interior air heats up and rises and when we open the upper windows it sets up a natural convective flow; exhausting warmer stale air up high and admitting cooler fresh air down low. All the resources I used and mentioned during this video are within the description below. I hope this helped explain a number of the planning opportunities the Sun can provide.
The info contained in solar charts are immensely useful and pretty easy to divine once you know what you are looking for. Smash that like button below if this has helped you in any way, it tells me you stick around to the top and that i so appreciate that! make certain to follow me on Instagram for drawings,sketches, and studio process images, if you are not already. Cheers my friends, we'll see you again next time.