Dynamic glazing pattern design

 Daylighting (Fall, 2016) | Prof Holly Samuelson                                                                                Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD), Cambridge, MA

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average american spends 93 percent of their life indoors, and average work hours are 8.4 hours per work day. The issue of visual quality at the workspace has been discussed to improve workers productivity as well as individuals’ well-being. Daylighting is an important light source for healthy visual conditions while providing the benefit of reducing artificial lighting load. However, many existing office buildings are not adequately lit by sufficient amount of daylight mainly due to incorrect window orientations or window-wall ratio. One of the well-known lighting retrofit strategy is the installation of internal blind in existing office buildings. However, poorly controlled internal shading devices might not be helpful to solve initial problems of daylighting such as glare discomfort. Effective shading control strategies or alternative methods would be required to augment indoor visual quality.

The objectives of this study lie in finding the optimized schedule and location of shading pattern. The suggested pattern can be manually installed or automatically controlled later with a development of a technology of solar film and window property control. This study is not limited to find optimized schedule but also encourage aesthetically pleasing internal atmosphere with the sufficient daylight penetration.


In the previous study, I identified the problems of the late afternoon glare on the south west facade and relatively low level of illuminance. To solve this problems, an automated blind control with varied height and angle was conducted. However, while automatic blind control allows less glare for occupants’ visual comfort, the high level of lighting electricity consumption of controlled areas and deprivation of views at the workstations were still remained.

The idea of dye sensitized solar cell as a shading pattern will be an renewable alternative solutions of internal shading by providing the sufficient amount of daylit spaces with a views. Both enhances workers benefits from the biophilia advantages, which will result in the better performance.

The limitation of this study is the application of the electrochromic DSSC patterns. Like a low level of efficiency at 11-18% than the conventional PV, the activation or implementation of both technology is still promising. I believe that the technical issue of implementing new strategies should be tackled soon.

The future work should not be limited to:

Developing shading pattern model in grasshopper, with a connection of the schedule data

Generating more design options for later use for pattern matching

Conducting EnergyPlus simulation to evaluate a performance of new design

Ellie Jungmin Han

Harvard Graduate School of Design

48 Quincy Street Cambridge, MA 02318