Aimin Fang, Yi Yang and Wenqiang Dong



An important energy-saving method to optimize building envelope design is the integration of local climate characteristics.

This study attempts to find sloped facade configurations to balance air conditioning energy demand and daylight utilization for four directions in an area with a hot climate. Tilt angle dependence of the air conditioning energy demand, useful daylight illuminance (UDI) and daylight glare index (DGI) are selected to investigate the acceptance thresholds of the tilt angle.

The final facade’s configuration is achieved by employing the graphical optimization method. An acceptable solution that balances better daylight performance and less energy consumption by air conditioning is developed. Due to the considered city being located in a low-latitude area with great daylight availability as well as a fully dimmable light control strategy, unbearable glare reduction can be achieved by benefiting from the sloped facades, without necessarily sacrificing much usable daylight.

Meanwhile, there is no obvious increase in the demand for lighting energy consumption, and a good outward view is preserved. The sloped rather than vertical facade provides natural solar shading to the east-, south- and west-oriented windows while allowing low-angle winter solar heat to warm the building space.

Tilt angles between 35°and 40° are preferred for the east facade, and smaller tilt angles of between 30°and 35° are recommended for the south facade. Larger tilt angles of between 40°and 45° are preferred for the west facade.

However, the north-facing facade’s outward tilt would cause an undesirable increase in air conditioning energy demand. The annual air conditioning energy demand of the east-, south- and west-facing space is found to separately decrease by 7.1%, 7.3% and 9.9%, respectively, benefiting from the sloped facades.



sloped facade; shading; energy; daylighting; glare