Insulated night shutters

Hi Everyone!

Short question aiming to clarify before I dive in honeybee world. Is it possible to substitute materials according to a specified schedule with honeybee? This feature would be helpful for those aiming to test insulated night shutters effect on performance in cold climates.

Would appreciate any kind of advice.

Additionally, I scanned the tools and didn’t notice any evidence of natural ventilation? Is it WIP or I just didn’t find it?


The short answer is “you can” although the long answer is that it might not be the best way to model what you are testing in E+.

There is a component that allows you to make dynamic blinds and you can drop down the conductivity of the blinds and boost up their thickness to give them insulating properties. The image below shows how to do this, dropping the conductivity down to 0.16 and boosting the thickness up to 5 cm:

If you know that airflow that you will get with Nat vent, you can set a custom airflow schedule. This video shows how to make it and set it up:…


I should add that a workflow for natural ventilation will be available at some point. We are still not sure what is the best way of addressing natural ventilation. You can read more here and there is an email chain going on:

Hi Chris,

Thank you as I didn’t notice conductivity property in the blind tool (because I didn’t expect it be there). Now I have more troubles as it is not very evident for me what do inputs “zone data1…3_” mean? Additionally what do I connect to _HBObjects? Windows or shading geometry? Then what is expected to come out of “windowBreps”,“shadeBreps” and HBObjWShades? I ask as it was skipped in your video tutorials. If I am not correct, please give me a hint where I can find it.

But I am obviously curious of what is the best way to test elements that substitute each other according to the schedule. If this was a tool this would be EXTREMELY powerful as it one of fundamental strategies in adaptive architecture.

Unfortunately, I do not know what happens behind the interface as before I have been an EDSL TAS user which is promoted at the AA school as user friendly).

The flow for the NatVent settings in the proposed settings is suitable for preliminary studies. However it would be helpful to control apertures by the weather data in a more tricky way. I mean that the input should be dynamic and obviously instead of using the outdoor temperature to open or close the window I would prefer to use the indoor DBT which appears dynamically while the conditions are calculated. Anyway you should know better!

Thank you for prompt help.

Hi Everyone!

What can cause the trouble with the schedule of heating and cooling? If the trouble is unavoidable is there any trick to simulate something similar?

Above all I would be glad if you show me within the file how and where to plug in shading device to simulate insulated night shutters. Believe me, all AA School SED program will be using it) (202 KB)

Hi Artem,

Schedule for cooling and heating is dualSetPoint and I’m not sure how you produce a schedule for dualSetPoint but I can check.

You can connect any shading object to HBContext_ input and they will be added to simulation.


I gave it another thought on my way back home. I actually think it should work for heating and cooling setpoints too. I will give it a try and let you know.



I have altered your GH file to include how you set up a schedule with your insulated blinds. You can find it attached and I hope that you don’t mind that I also updated all components in the file to the version that we have on the github now. Here’s an image showing the workflow for setting up a schedule with the blinds:

Here, the blinds are being pulled any time that the solar radiation gets too intense or the outdoor temperature is above the building balance point.

You are right to point out to that I have not made any tutorial videos on how to use the ZoneShades component yet. I have had it on my list for a while but the workflow doesn’t address all cases of dynamic shades (notably cases where the shade is in between panes of glass) and I was considering holding off until this was better fleshed-out.

As you see in the example file, for HBObjects, you connect a HBZone or a HBSurface that has windows already on it. You want to use the HBObjectsWShades in the rest of your workflow and the other outputs are just to help you visualize what you are simulating. As you can see, I connect the shadeBreps to a preview component in the file so that you see what the generated shades look like.

The zoneData inputs are there for another type of shade analysis that is unrelated to the dynamic shades case that you are running here. I attached a second GH file that shows this other workflow in case you are curious. I mostly use those zoneData inputs to align zone heating, cooling and solar beam gain values to correct windows. This can them be fed into another component that performs a “shade benefit analysis”.

As I said before, if you calculate the airflow that you will get with certain aperture size, you can create a custom schedule of airflow values and feed it into your simulation for your NatVent values. You can also use the temperature results that come out of your simulation to make a custom airflow schedule (not just outdoor data). All of this said, I am currently working on the components that will allow you to set an indoor temperature at which to open the windows that will be used dynamically in the simulation.

The heating/cooling setpoint schedule cannot accept a CSV schedule currently because the default of HB is to use a dual setpoint schedule (which does not accommodate CSV schedules). To be honest, I am not so sure why we have them as inputs right now but perhaps Mostapha can shed some light on this. In the meantime, if you would like to set an HVAC availability scheduled to shut off the HVAC when you are not trying to reach a setpoint, I currently have a quick hack that does this that I will eventually turn into a full component. Let me know if you need this and I will try to pull it together.

-Chris (557 KB)
Example of shade benefit simulation for (228 KB)

Thanks Chris! That was a bug. I fixed the issue for assigning csv schedules for heating and cooling setpoints. It works fine now.

Artem, Check the attached file for the fixed writeIdf component. Also grab Honeybee_Honeybee from this file and replace it in your file.

Hope it helps,

Mostapha (137 KB)

BTW Chris! what you put together there is just awesome! I can’t wait to get Natural Ventilation fully integrated to Honeybee. Some magical works can be done after that.


That is great that the setpoints schedule is fixed! I was trying to use it the other day and I should have just asked you to check it instead of editing the HVAC availability. I noticed that the updated WriteIDF anf HB_HB components have not yet been committed to the github. Let me know when you do this as I would like to see the changes that you made (if only to understand better how E+ is dealing with setpoint schedules).

Glad that you liked the GH definition. Yes, Nat vent is going to help a lot. I am going write a big post to the NatVent github issue shortly. I have been understanding a lot better the different ways that E+ can model nat vent and I think I have carved out a chunk that I am going to implement.


Thank you for the note. Just committed! In this case it was totally my mistake not taking care of .csv schedules for setpoints.

Awesome! I didn’t realize that was the problem. I can see myself using this a lot now.

hi Mostapha and Chris, I just had to jump into this conversation about natural ventilation. I have been trying to look into different ways to model heat transfer - like Cfdesign that went through acquisition into autodesk simulation package and some catia plugins that I cant afford. and what you two talk about sounds like music to my ears. The closest thing I know is ambiens by Tas suite, which got covered by Lmnts. below you see an image of my design it is based off your work - ladybug radiation analysis. right now its more ore less an artistic illustration, esp the wind part shown as arrows. I am designing an advanced facade system that integrate louvers, solar chimneys and natural ventilation. identifying development application is one thing but withouth enough climate data sets that might also be an animatable parameter using native grasshopper components.

Hi Youngjae,

All sounds fair. We need to have a CFD component in the package and we tried once. I teamed up with EFRI-Pulse project ( while ago and developed a connection to OpenFoam. We made a prototype that is works but the project is on hold for reasons which are out of my hand and I am the most frustrated person not having it out for use. Search for “Butterfly” and you will find some related stuff.

There are also other cases that may happen soon. Years ago, I wrote a connection to Ansys Fluent which I will share with Cayote project ( Ansys Fluent is pretty expensive though and I personally never had the chance to use it once I left the school!

Other option is CoolVent (, and we briefly had some conversations on getting it connected to the package but we already have so much on the list before getting there.


@Artem - didn’t mean to make a tangent too far off from your topic, just wanted to reply to Mostapha briefly.

I did read about your post on butterfly. butterfly is cfd and coolvent is thermal zone as I understand.

I think honeybee and ladybug together are already a great design tool. I didn’t realize the whole story with CFD and the various ways you have tried. Have a lot of respect for your project and your colleagues that are working on this, and I hope you guys get enough credit just going for it considering just how ambitious your project is. and open-source equivalence of at least 7 percent equity share too :slight_smile: as in per owners. if you guys can offer 1 year cliff and 4 year vesting I will consider joining your team. just kidding what your team is doing are beyond me.

After checking simulation CFD 2015, I realized that one big advantage for LB+HB is that well, I didnt see a built in feature of taking account for direct solar gain as part of the simulation.

From the tutorials I have seen, they set the reference temperature to the exterior walls, but there is nothing solar. Here is a rather comprehensive video of how to set up for Simulation CFD . From 10:30 you can see that boundary condition for exterior walls is set with a film coefficient and Reference temperature (around 12:30). At 12:33, there is actually a parameter called radiation right below. I check the parameters for that myself and found that it includes emissivity and reference temperature but not watt hour per square meter like we have it with ladybug.

SO even for a software like simulation CFD, which already seems very sophisticated with the pay-as-you-go cloud parallel simulation option and all, I don’t see that it is designed for simulating natural ventilation. Since with SIM CFD it seems that one can be precise about everything including heat plumes from artificial lights in terms of watts so I am guessing that there is a way to model in solar gain as some kind of projected geometry somehow but it is pretty clear that there is EXTRA WORK needed to factor in solar gain there.

I think it would be pretty major if there is a way to model solar radiation and CFD for interior/building envelop together because I have not seen that kind of simulation in the industry.

Thank you for the extra ref cayote and coolvent. I will make check them out along with SAM.

p.s. I reread what I wrote and just wanted clearify I sure didn’t refer to any of your work with honeybee or ladybug as “artistic illustration.” I meant my pretty arrows :slight_smile:

“I did read about your post on butterfly. butterfly is cfd and coolvent is thermal zone as I understand.”

That’s true.

“After checking simulation CFD 2015, I realized that one big advantage for LB+HB is that well, I didnt see a built in feature of taking account for direct solar gain as part of the simulation.”

This is actually part of the process in Butterfly. Here is the conceptual workflow:

There are technical issues involved though if you want to consider the effects of long-wave radiation from the surfaces which is something that EFRI-Pulse project is trying to address.

“p.s. I reread what I wrote and just wanted clearify I sure didn’t refer to any of your work with honeybee or ladybug as “artistic illustration.” I meant my pretty arrows :)”

No worries! I personally consider data visualization as one of the most important parts of the development and I’m a big fan of meaningful and beautiful graphs and arrows. If you are looking for a great talk on visualizing algorithms then you should check this one:,


I’m crossing all my fingers for collaboration to OpenFoam.

Let me know if it moves forward and how I can assist.