2 Replies Latest reply on Oct 24, 2017 10:09 AM by Peter Francis

    How do I measure solar radiation ?

    Peter Francis

      Hi all ,

      I'm simulating one of our products ( a digital display screen ) in various external locations and orientations.

      I'm particularly interested in the effects of solar radiation.

      I'm struggling to find a way of measuring ( with a goal/surface/etc ) the actual solar radiation hitting our product , I need to measure both the direct normal i.e. the amount of radiation arriving from the sun as well as the values on vertical / horizontal structures.


      I've got calculated values but I need to cross check these with the CFD values.


      Has anyone done this and can point me in the correct direction ?


      Thank in advance



        • Re: How do I measure solar radiation ?
          Bill McEachern

          I am keen to figure this out as well and not just for solar radiation but also for other specified inputs like thermal energy in a volume to name just one - to confirm you are hitting what you are aiming at. I have suspicions that what you ask for is not always what you get depending on mesh and other issues. Maybe its an enhancement request.

            • Re: How do I measure solar radiation ?
              Peter Francis

              Hi Bill,

              After a little head scratching I've solved my issue and its relativly simple ( isn't it always ! )


              Here's how I did it


              Setup a measurement body (see below) aligned to the incoming solar radiation

              Give the body a Black Body Radiative surface.

              I then setup the following ;


              Add a SG Net Radiant Flux (Solar) to the face of the Measurement body



              Surface Plot - Net Radiant Flux (solar)

              Surface Parameters - - Net Radiant Flux (solar)


              I'm now getting the values I was expecting .

              Initially I was getting confusing values as I was using Heat Flux which includes all forms heat flux not just Solar.



              I've seen far too many people just 'turn the handle' with CFD and trust the results , thats why I have an Excel Solar calculator and SMath worksheet that I use before I even fire up the CFD.

              I think its crucial that I'm able to check what the software is giving me , otherwise how else can you rely on the values.


              Solar Insolation.jpg