Performance assessment and development of a design support tool for innovative BIPV façade systems

M. Ghasempourabadi

Research output: ThesisEngD Thesis


This PDEng project is related to the development of two types of building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) façade systems: SoloWall and ZigZagSolar.
SoloWall is a modular type of BIPV for integration in vertical facades, developed by SCX Solar. ZigZagSolar, developed by Wallvision, uses a series of slanted reflectors and solar modules to augment the PV yield of vertical BIPV while giving special attention to architectural integration.

After one year of monitoring of the system, several stages objectives were covered. The project was successful by presenting the first mockup of the Design Support Tool. Additionally, during the process of performing the tasks, the quarterly reports were delivered to show the progress of the project and analytical result for validation of simulations. Thus based on the progress reports, the main results and achievements of this project within the given time frame are as follows:
• Previous simulations of ZigZagSolar was calibrated and validated based on the analytical data from the experiment.
• A Design Support Tool (specified for the BIPV façade systems) was developed. Also the first mockup of the model was delivered.
• Business plan and business model of the ZigZagSolar were developed based on the potential customers in Middle East.
• An annual analytical performance monitoring report for ZigZagSolar was prepared based on the data from the experiment and validation of simulation results.

The project aimed at supporting the development of these two innovative BIPV façade systems by improving the awareness of the customers. In addition, making the connection between research outcomes and technological design opportunities in the form of a design support tool was one of the important targets. The motivation of preparing a design support tool was formed because, company would be able to better introduce and sell this product at the target markets by using such tool.

Therefore, this project wanted to do these four main following objectives:
1. Further investigation of PV integrated solar façade systems and their potential to generate power, with the help of experimental validation and calibration of a simulation model.
2. Generate and suggest new ideas as an approach to whole system design for these types of BIPV façades. Additionally, develop a design support tool based on the results.
3. Explore business applications based on scientific data from simulations and experiments. Which provides a better understanding of the techno-financial performance of the whole project to the owners, and a better value proposition to future customers.
4. Bridge the gap between real market needs and what is provided by companies as solution and prepare a platform to ease the process of selling the product based on system function awareness of consumers.

As conclusion, there is still a need to verify the accuracy of the design solution provided in PDEng project with follow up projects. Therefore, it is suggested to produce the first version of Design Support Tool and apply it for the current client in a period of at least three months.

Accordingly record the number of successful cases which directly were linked to usage of this product in the marketing process.
Original languageEnglish
  • Hensen, Jan L.M., Supervisor
  • Loonen, Roel C.G.M., Supervisor
  • Valckenborg, R.M.E., External supervisor
Award date23 Feb 2017
Place of PublicationEindhoven
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 2017

Bibliographical note

PDEng thesis. - Confidential until 01-01-2050.


Dive into the research topics of 'Performance assessment and development of a design support tool for innovative BIPV façade systems'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this