Site Analysis View

The Site view within the Summary View is dedicated to presenting information on the local weather conditions of the current project, based on it's weather file. 

By understanding and analysing the conditions of the weather file that hopefully pertains to your site (noting the limitations of the zoning of the NatHERS Climate Zones across Australia), designers and consultants can consider climate responsive passive design strategies to improve their building's thermal and energy performance such as the use of natural ventilation, solar passive heating, shading and thermal-mass.

1 - Climate Zone

Select the NatHERS Climate Zone that you would like to analyse the weather statistics of.


2 - Weather Set Year (and RCP for Future Climate Files)

You can select the 2019 or 2022 NatHERS weather variants of the site in this dropdown. If downloaded, the CSIRO Predictive Weather Files can also be analysed in the site view to see how the climate conditions of the site may change in a warming climate based on various greenhouse mitigation strategies (i.e. RCP2.6, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios which become selectable in Hero if you have selected a 2030, 2050, 2070 or 2090 future weather file). 


3 - Annual Statistics

The ABCB Climate Zone (along with it's description), longitude and latitude of the site are shown in this section.

The annual minimum, maximum and average temperatures of the weather files are also shown in this section.


4 - Monthly  Temperature Chart

The NatHERS Weather files account for many climatic conditions with the external air temperatures (i.e. dry-bulb) being one of the most important for energy simulation. The daily minimum, daily average and daily maximum are presented in a monthly average format in the charts.


5 - Monthly Solar Irradiance Chart

The NatHERS Weather files account for many climatic conditions of the site including the solar radiance in both it's direct (i.e. the beam radiation) and diffuse (i.e. scattered off clouds, atmosphere and objects) components. This can be useful to judge how appropriate a site is for solar passive design, or how solar PV might be sited for grid-connected or off-grid scenarios.


6 - Monthly Cloud Cover Chart

The NatHERS Weather files account for many climate conditions including cloud cover of the site, which can be seen in the monthly average cloud cover chart. The cloud weather data is expressed in oktas as a unit however this has been translated to a % value in the chart because if you tell people you know what an okta is you will lose friends.


7 - Export options

The are a range of options to export the weather view and information to other formats. These includes:

Export to PDF - Exports the current Site view of Hero to a PDF file for inclusion in reports etc.

Export to Image - Exports the current Site view to the clipboard of your computer for pasting into client reports as an image.

Export to CSV/Clipboard (Data) - Exports the Weather file to a formatted understandable weather file in CSV or clipboard (tabular) format for pasting into Excel etc. The raw weather files have no formatting applied so are generally not in a readable form so this can be a handy way of post-processing those weather files for further use!


Climate Responsive Design

Understanding your climate's weather conditions is crucial to designing sustainable buildings, and particularly if you're working in areas that you're not familiar with or that your client may not be aware of, it can very valuable to integrate this into your design process.

For example, the image below shows how Darwin has actually greater solar irradiance during the dry seasons ("Winter" for the other states) than during summer despite lower temperatures. This may inform solar PV sizing, installation pitch and orientation.


Future Climate Files

If the CSIRO Predictive Weather Files have been located in the Hero user library climate folder (as per the instructions in this link) then you can see the predictive changes in weather conditions that the site may experience over it's lifetime due to a warming climate. For example the images below show the 2022 weather for Melbourne vs the 2070 RCP4.5 scenario showing a several degree temperature shift across most indicators. 

A 2070 RCP4.5 (GHG peaking in 2040) Warming Scenario for Melbourne

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