A Method for performance based design exploration : generating external shading units for an office building in Nicosia, Cyprus

Burak, Ercan
Performance based design exploration has been practiced in architectural design for more than four decades. It has been within the scope of the expertise of technical and engineering professionals until now, and has become widely accessible to the architect within the last decade Latest advances in the computational and parametric tools and user interface enhancements in the simulation software has rendered possible the active involvement of the architect into the process. Every design process needs a custom design workflow according to the requirements of the project and the level of development necessary for each stage. The customization and parameterization of the design tools provide the base for both controlling and automating the design exploration process. Design process has become a process of reading, writing and manipulating databases and at the same time converting, translating and representing them. The aim of this study is to build a custom workflow for the design exploration of external shading devices for an office building in hot climate. The initial shading units were designed without using any performance simulation. Afterwards, by parameters of rhythm, depth, angle and number of division, shading unit alternatives were generated. Through the workflow, the initial design and the alternatives generated by evolutionary algorithms based on daylight performance criteria are compared. As a result, improvements in terms of daylight factor and solar irradiation were achieved among an extensive number of geometric combinations which were made possible by a few number of parameters.