Korean Sun Simulator



Heliodon in Tailand



Heliodon at Auburn



Free CAD drawings for building a Sun Simulator


The Sun Simulator heliodon is conceptually clear because it simulates our everyday experience: the sunpaths overhead and the model on a horizontal ground plane. It is a large fixed device usually greater than 10 ft (3 m) in diameter. Although it is built for a particular latitude, the model support table can be tilted plus or minus 5 degrees yielding a 10 degree latitude range without loss of clarity (i.e. the architectural model is essentially still horizontal). Because of annual symmetry, seven arches simulate the 21st day of all 12 months. For example, the sunpaths for November 21 and January 21 are the same. There is a light for each hour for each month. The switches that allow any light to be turned on can be located on a control panel, in a wired remote control, or a wireless remote control.



Because it simulates our everyday experience, the Sun Simulator heliodon is extremely intuitive and conceptually clear. Since its lights are fairly far from the model, this heliodon’s accuracy is quite good. The further the lights are from the model the more parallel are the light rays when they reach the support table. The large size also allows the use of both larger architectural models and larger audiences.











The Sun Simulator’s large size is also its greatest disadvantage. Significant building space must be allocated for its use. For a 10 ft (3 m) heliodon a floor area of 15 x 15 ft (4.5 m) is required and larger heliodons are better. The Sun Simulator heliodon must be either built locally from free CAD drawings or assembled on-site from a kit available from the RADIAN Corp.




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Free CAD drawings available from Norbert Lechner