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Who is this for:

Architects and engineers interested in Building Performance Analysis (BPA) at the early / conceptual stages of the design process. 


How to use Autodesk Vasari for numerous types of Building Performance Analysis (BPA) including Energy Analysis, Solar Radiation, Sun Studies, Wind Tunnel (exterior airflow) and a few others. To learn how to use Vasari to build your model take a look at the first post in this series. A subsequent post will cover using Vasari's visual programming capabilities to improve your design. Note that some of these features are also available for Revit.

By: Emile Kfouri – Sr. Manager of the Autodesk Building Performance Analysis Group

Getting Started with BPA using Vasari:

This is the follow up post to the Vasari getting started post. Now that you know how to create your form in Vasari it is time to figure out how your building design will perform. We will look at Energy Analysis, Wind Tunnel, Wind Rose, Solar Radiation and Sun and Shadow Studies

Conceptual Energy Analysis:

The conceptual Energy Analysis capabilities enable you to create an energy model, perform whole building, annual energy analysis and look at the results right in Vasari. Note this feature is also available in Revit and works similarly on Revit Mass elements. A little known fact is that Vasari is usually better than Revit for creating energy models from mass models because the automatic zoning more closely follows ASHRAE standards (see more about auto-zoning in Vasari in this  article by Lilli Smith).

For more info about the Conceptual Energy Analysis feature see the Sustainability Workshop.

Energy Analysis in Vasari

Sun Path and Wind Rose:

Vasari and Revit feature an interactive 3D sun path diagram which can help you visualize shadows and understand the sun’s position throughout the day and year. More info about the Solar Study (Sun Path /Shadow) feature see the Sustainability Workshop.

The Vasari Wind Rose feature enables you to set your project's location and select a nearby weather station, then get information about prevailing winds directing and speed during the year.

Be cautious when using this data – and especially in using the wind-rose overlay on your site. The wind patterns on your site may be different than what’s reported at the nearest weather station due to microclimates or the site’s surroundings.

Note this feature is not available for Revit.

Sun Path and Wind Rose in Vasari

Solar Radiation:

The solar radiation capabilities help you quickly, easily, and iteratively calculate solar radiation on the faces of a conceptual mass. More info about the Solar Radiation feature, see the Sustainability Workshop .

Note this feature is not available for Revit.

Solar Radiation in Vasari

Wind Tunnel:

Vasari’s wind tunnel tool which simulates exterior airflow around your model is an easy to use computational fluid dynamics (CFD) tool that is useful for early-stage conceptual analysis of airflow around building site and building form. For more info about the Wind Tunnel feature see the Sustainability Workshop. For information about an updated version of this tool for Revit check out Project Falcon for Revit.

Exterior Airflow in Vasari

Energy Analysis using Architectural Building elements:  For information on performing Energy Analysis on Architectural Building elements i.e. walls, roofs, floors, windows etc. check out the upcoming Revit 2014 BPA related features.

Tell us what you think: Have you used any of these feature? Have you needed any of these capabilities but did not know they existed in Revit or Vasari? We are always interested in your thoughts.