Like any other 3D platform, cove.tool has it's own toolset and workflow. Below is a step-by-step breakdown of each capability.
Before we get to Daylight, make sure to complete these 2 steps
1.Add a Building Location
Since cove.tool's addition of the site-context feature, pinpointing the exact building location is more important than ever. After starting a new project, users can add a building's location in the form of a street address or as geo-coordinates (examples below). This input will select the nearest and most recent weather file, align the project with regional manufacturing costs and utility rates, and also site your building in its real-world context using an OpenMaps API.
2.Upload Your Building Geometry
In order to reach the Full Floor Plate 3D Visualization Tool (sun icon on the left-hand navigation bar), users will need to upload geometry with a 3rd Party Plugin. Our plugin library currently includes Autodesk Revit, Rhino/Grasshopper, and SketchUp. Entering building geometry manually will not allow users to initiate the 3D sequence since coordinate information about each surface of the model is needed in order to recreate the meshes for the daylight. Read more about the differences between 3D Mode and Manual here. Uploading building context geometry via your 3rd party plugin may no longer be necessary since the map has the context automatically. Once you finish uploading all the geometry in each of the categories, toggle to 3D Mode and click the Daylight button.
We have arrived at the Daylight Page!
cove.tool's 3D visualization page includes 5 major features. The sDA daylight-map, the ASE glare-map, a point-in-time shadow tool, radiation-map, and site context. This article will focus on navigating these tools using the 3D interface. For assumptions and methodology for each simulation please click the respective article hyperlinks to learn more.
NAVIGATING THE INTERFACE
Keyboard and Mouse Movement
Mouse Right-Hold: for panning around the environment, also known as orbit.
Mouse Left-Hold: to move around the scene, also known as drag.
Mouse Wheel: zoom in and out of the scene
Keyboard Shortcuts: N/A
Buttons on the model-space screen
TopLeft Screen, 3D/2D Button: Orient camera to top(plan) or 3D view
TopLeft Screen, Snapshot Button: Download image as .png file, more here.
TopLeft Screen, Labels Toggle: Toggle visibility of text labels on the map
TopRight Screen, Plus/Minus Button: Zoom in and Zoom out
TopRight Screen, North Arrow (indicator/button): reset bearing to North
Top Right, Edit Scene (Pencil Icon): Activate scene editing mode. Note that activating editing mode will disable the ability to move around the scene.
> Enabling the Edit Scene mode will reveal 2 additional buttons.
TopRight, Move Button: Translation Control. Once this button enabled, a gumball control will appear above your building. Dragging the pink square will allow users to move their models free of guides re. Users can also use the blue or red arrow-vectors to move their buildings on the x-axis and y-axis.
TopRight, Rotate Button: Rotation Mode. Once this button enabled, a green circle-control will appear above your building. Dragging along the circle will manually rotate the building. To type in a 0-359 degree change, while the rotate button is activated, users can type in an angle on the rotation angle input at the BottomRight corner of the control panel.
Daylight Control Panel Capabilities
Capabilities and interface of the right-hand control panel will change as different Analysis Types are active. The following two sections will display under all types.
Middle, Element Selection: Toggle the visibility of 11 visual categories. Exterior Walls, Interior Walls, Roofs, Windows, Skylights, Floors, Shading Devices, Context Buildings, Context Map, Property Lines, and Analysis Grid.
2ndToTop, Date: Calender date for shadow study
3rdToTop, Time: Time of day for shadow study
sDA & ASE
Top, LEED Metrics & Percentage sDA/ASE: Whole Building Results
2ndToTop, Floors: All Levels which have been analyzed for sDA & ASE
BelowFloors, Select All checkbox: Select/Deselect all analysis levels
BelowFloors, Blue Eplise: Toggle visibility for each analysis level
4thToTop, Legend: Compare grid point color's to analysis results
Bottom, Settings: Analysis Controls
BelowSettings, Grid Size Input: Extent of analysis detail (2ft limit)
BelowSettings, Glass Transmittance: VT%, VLT, or Visual Transmittance of Glazing
BelowSettings, Rotation Angle Input: Rotation factor in degrees clockwise
Last, Recalculate button: Rerun simulation with changes to data
Assumptions & Methodology
Find our sources and calculation methods in the following articles
sDA and ASE - Full Floor Plate Daylight Analysis
Shadow Study and cove.tool
Site Context and cove.tool
1. Can I save my camera angle (view)?
cove.tool allows for a scene-state save, which saves the last camera angle which was set since the user last viewed the page. Currently saving multiple views is not the capability of this tool but is a planned feature. Stay tuned!
2. How can I edit the global map, beyond deleting and resizing the buildings?
Users can change the global map by going to OpenStreetMap. Login, or if this is your first time, create an account. Once in the app, watch the tutorial series to see how new buildings can be created, or edit existing models. Once you complete the changes, it will take 24 hours to be added to the global OpenSteetMap's database. After this reload your cove.tool browser and see the newly updated context buildings.
3. Can I export the context buildings?
Not yet, but this will be a future capability within cove.tool. However, it is possible to retrieve this data from OpenStreetMaps.
4. How do I see all the buildings available in cove.tool without uploading a model?
To just see which locations have context modeled, visit OSMBuildings.org. Enter your building location and see what context is readily available.
5. Can I run a daylight/glare/shadow simulation without the site context?
This would yield an extremely inaccurate simulation and it is highly discouraged. Context is a crucial part of the energy and daylight aspects of the building's overall performance. Do not do this. If absolutely necessary, locate your building at the airport, or open land area near an airport.
6. How do I export a report from this page? For each analysis?
Check out this article for steps on exporting images for a report.
7. Will uploading new geometry require me to redo the changes I have made to my site? ex. If I deleted building or changed some heights.
No, Uploading new geometry won't change the altered context. If you want to reset the context, re-enter the building address and the map will reset to the default import.