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Solar Access Studies

With SOLIDWORKS Professional, you can apply sunlight to SOLIDWORKS models. Using solar access studies, you can simulate the movement of the sun as it passes over models of buildings, solar panels, and outdoor equipment.

You must include the following data when specifying sunlight for a model:
  • The direction of north with respect to the model
  • The geographic location of the model
  • The time and date to simulate

You can create two types of solar access studies:

Fixed date, variable time

Displays the path of the sun on a specific date across a range of time.

Fixed time, variable date

Displays the position of the sun at a specific time of day across a range of dates.

Video: Solar Access Study

Creating Solar Access Studies

Using solar access studies, you can simulate how sunlight that is applied to a model changes over time. To create a solar access study, you must first add sunlight to a model.

To create a solar access study:

  1. From a part or assembly, select the Motion Studies tab (lower portion of the graphics area).
  2. Click Animation Wizard Tool_Animation_Wizard.gif (MotionManager toolbar).
  3. In the wizard, select Solar Access Study and click Next.
  4. Select the solar access study type:
    Option Description
    Fixed date, variable time Displays the movement of the sun over a time range on a selected date.
    Fixed time, variable date Displays the movement of the sun at a selected time of day over a range of dates.
  5. Complete the rest of the wizard and click Finish.
  6. To run the study, after creating the study, click Play from Start Tool_Play_From_Start.gif (MotionManager toolbar).
    The speed of the animation depends on your settings. After you play the animation once, you can drag the timeline to view changes in the shadows as the sun moves.


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