Solar shading is a broad term used to cover techniques that limit the entry of excessive solar energy. These techniques include shading using fixed awnings or brise soleil all the way through to fully automated blinds and shutters. In the heating season, solar shading can also be used effectively to retain the desired heat as it reduces the thermal conductance of the glazing and therefore acts as an insulator.
Weather conditions such as light and heat change constantly in the course of one day. That is why, in the context of this guide, there is an emphasis on automated systems which help us to benefit from optimal indoor conditions.
When designing a new building or preparing works to an existing one, it is necessary to take into consideration all of the characteristics of solar protection devices in order to select the correct product and façade management strategy. Shading products have an impact on the solar heat transmittance, daylight transmittance and also on the insulation of the façade. Consequently it is necessary to identify the product that will best balance these effects depending on the building properties, its location and orientation.
This guide is intended to provide the basic knowledge of how solar shading characteristics are evaluated and what properties are involved in the transmission of the solar radiation in relation to the whole energy balance of the building. It is based on calculation methods taken from European Standards.
Examples of simulations highlighting the impact of solar shading on the total energy loads of buildings are shown in Appendix – D (Data and calculation tools).