Daylight modeling is important for understanding light levels, environmental quality and energy saving impacts of early design decisions. Many daylight modeling tools have been developed, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. In this video, energy engineer Jason Sippel illustrates the process for integrating Rhino, AGi32 and Adobe Creative Suite to perform a single, comprehensive daylight modeling analysis.


The tools each are chosen to complement one another by utilizing their strengths.

  • Rhino: 3D modeling and geometry creation
  • AGi32: light level prediction
  • Photoshop/Illustrator: data post-processing and graphical display

Working with architects and engineers, this methodology allows us to quickly evaluate design proposals and provide useful performance data to help the design team make informed decisions. As changes are made to the design they can quickly be adjusted and propagated through the existing model which improves the speed and accuracy of daylight analysis. This creates an iterative process which is more responsive to the needs of early or even late design decisions.

Using this method we evaluated the top lighting design for our office location during a variety of conditions. Daylight analysis helped to determine a balance point between cost, energy, and daylight access. The images created in illustrator combined with the rendered perspective quickly communicate quality and distribution of light in the space. Ultimately the study suggested that even distributions of light at a sufficient foot-candle level could be provided with fewer skylights at a wider spacing.


6 minutes

Record date

February 20, 2013