Handling complex geometry in Honeybee vs DIVA

Honeybee and Ladybug work great when using relatively simple geometry, either generated in Rhino or Grasshopper. However, sometimes I receive a more complex file for analysis, and when I try to use that geometry for analysis, Honeybee becomes extraordinarily slow.

It seems like writing a RAD file takes many many minutes for a Rhino file of ~20mb, which for DIVA is a walk in the park - a few seconds and it’s done.

I want to move most of my workflow from DIVA-based to Honeybee-based but this is quite a big obstacle.

I have managed to run an analysis in DIVA and then connect the results to Honeybee’s analysis files for better analysis, but it would be great to have one simple workflow.

Maybe it is the meshing going on in the background that makes it slow in Hbee- it can take a long time in DIVA, too, depending on the meshing level; you should be able to put the DIVA output *.rad file into the HBee-generated octree, including whatever materials you assigned in DIVA - if the scene positions line up. Doesn’t Hbee even have an “import rad” component? Otherwise modify the simulation bat files to feed your D-generated rad into the oct package.

The import rad component works, but loads the whole geometry into Grasshopper, again causing a massive slowdown, so that’s not really a solution either.

It’s definitely possible to modify the .bat files (even in GH) but I was hoping for a slightly easier process. Ideally, I’d be able to hook a rad file into Honeybee’s ‘Run Analysis’ component.

Hi Reinier,

Is your complex input geometry mesh or Breps? Honeybee’s default workflow is designed based on breps, which potentially provides a cleaner workflow and rad file and also let’s you manipulate the geometry (e.g. add window to surface based on %).

If you input a crazy mesh it will first convert it to brep and then write it to. Rad files which will potentially take so long.

In case you have a mesh there is a mesh to rad component that should generate the Rad file in few seconds. You can use output files of this component and add them to the scene using additionalRadFiles input in runDaylight component.

Hope it helps. I don’t have my laptop on me right now but I can send you an example on Wednesday if you couldn’t figure it out on your own.


Hi again Reinier,

Here is an example. It take less than a minutes on my laptop to export 1,000,000 faces. It will be probably slower than DIVA as Honeybee exports the .obj file itself which will be slower than using Rhino’s export to .obj

Let me know if it solves your problem.


Hi Mostapha,

Thanks for elaborating with an example. I have updated to the latest version of Honeybee and used the Mesh2Rad utility and it works quite quickly now - fast enough, in any case, to deal with the geometry I have in mind. There is only the additional step of meshing complex geometry manually in Rhino first, but that is a surmountable obstacle.



Hi Reinier,

Interesting! If the complex geometry is a brep and you can share it I really like to take a look and see why it takes so long.



Hi Mostapha and Reinier,

Thanks for bringing this topic up - incredibly useful tool the Mesh2Rad.

However I am trying to feed an additional .rad file to Annual simulations and it does not work.

I’ve noticed that it works with Image Based, and Grid Analysis. But with annual simulations (DAYSIM), it is impossible to feed additional rad file. I am working with complex geometries and Oconv.exe crashes every time, so it is a useful tool.

I am attaching a supersimple example.

Do you have the same trouble?



Hi Berardo, Thank you for reporting this. It was a bug which is fixed now. Sorry for the very late reply.


hi. Mostapha,

Does it mean that mesh2Rad component can import mesh in calculation as HB surface? I also have some issues with importing complex geometry in for daylight analysis. Could you please advise what is the best way to import complex geometry without losing too much speed? Thank you.

Yes. Here is another example.

2 posts were split to a new topic: Context Geometry for Daylight