Apr 12

Introducing gModeller V1.6 – With Energy+ Support

Today, we released version 1.6 of gModeller!

gModeller V1.6

gModeller V1.6 contains a number of bug fixes, and user interface tweaks, and we have also included Energy+ support!

Energy+ Support

With the Energy+ extension to SketchUp you can now model your building in Google SketchUp, add building properties using gModeller and then perform an energy analysis of the model using Energy+, directly from within SketchUp. You can also export an Energy+ IDF file in order to carry out more advanced Energy+ analyses on your model, and this can be used in a number of Energy+ focused downstream tools. This is in addition to being able to export your SketchUp model as gbXML which can be used in a large variety of downstream analysis tools!

Energy+ in gModeller

Energy+ Options in gModeller

The Energy+ extension to gModeller is still at a Beta level of development, and is not quite complete yet. This means that the functionality is not fully complete, and at the moment provides support for model geometry and constructions, we are still working on implementing system handling and other functionality required to carry out a full Energy+ analysis. Because the Energy+ extension is still in beta, it may contain some bugs and other small glitches when analysing models. However, we are really excited about this functionality in gModeller and thought we would share it with you. We’d love to hear your feedback and suggestions on this, and we will be updating gModeller with more fully featured Energy+ features soon.

Other Updates

gModeller V1.6 also contains a number of other usability and bug fixes as listed below:

  • Improved Mac OS X Support – gModeller should work much better on Mac OS X. Installing on Mac OS X is now much easier and does not require your Flash Player Security settings to be modified.
  • Improved gbXML import – importing gbXML in gModeller is now faster, and more reliable on both Windows and Mac OS X.
  • Improved surface attribution materials – we’ve updated the building surface attribution materials in gModeller and fixed some issues with these in Mac OS X.
  • Slight user interface changes.
  • Fixed some issues with logging in and out of gModeller.
  • Added more constructions and materials to the Construction library section – this is important for Energy+ support!
  • More…
To begin using the latest versions of gModeller, you’ll need to download and install gModeller for Windows or gModeller for Mac OS X from our website. You will then be able to log into gModeller using your GreenspaceLive account and begin modelling. If you don’t have a GreenspaceLive account, please visit our website to register for a free trial!
We hope you enjoy this latest version of gModeller and would love to hear your feedback!

– Malcolm Murray, Product Manager


Apr 12

Project RAPIER


During Ecobuild we unveiled a project that we’ve been working on for the last 18 months called RAPIER.

RAPIER at Ecobuid

Presenting RAPIER at Ecobuild

RAPIER is a Web Application that allows for early stage analysis of Cost, Embodied Carbon, and Energy usage of building ideas. Users can set up building options with various designs and parameters, run them through the RAPIER engine and then compare results across all options.

RAPIER has been been put together by a consortium of four partners: GreenspaceLive, Architype, BDSP, and Sweett Group – each partner bringing their own expertise to be encapsulated into the engines that run behind the scenes, and into the design of the front-end interface. RAPIER is a Web application that has been built by its users for its users!

Rapier Screenshot

RAPIER has a pretty awesome user interface – its completely built using HTML and Javascript, which means that RAPIER works in almost any browsers – from your mobile phone, to iPad, to Laptop or Desktop computer. All the heavy processing takes place on the cloud, so the application is extremely portable, all you need is a wifi or mobile internet connection!

RAPIER uses a card based interface which allows you to easily compare different building options, or focus in on one and drill down into the details. We’ve taken a smart default approach to data population – you can setup a building in seconds using our default templates, or you can drill down into a more complex level of detail and setup your options just the way you want them to be. You can also duplicate and change options, to try out and compare different parameters – e.g., what difference would using a steel structure make as opposed to a concrete structure? Or, what is the cost and carbon difference if I ship my materials from Scotland instead of China?

The engines running behind the scenes in RAPIER are based on years of industry expertise and best practice. The RAPIER cost model provides estimated capital and operational costs based on real building portfolios. The RAPIER embodied carbon engine provides detailed carbon estimates including comprehensive travel carbon – from component source to building location. The RAPIER thermal model is built on existing research work carried out by BDSP, and carries out a dynamic thermal and energy simulaiton of your model.

On top of this, RAPIER uses gbXML as a way of making its building options portable – you can export your options as gbXML and import them into Google SketchUp using GreenspaceLive’s gModeller and gEnergy EPC, DesignBuilder, IES, Ecotect, TAS, and a bunch of others as well – this will allow you to carry out further downstream analysis of your options.

RAPIER isn’t quite finished yet, and has just been unveiled. We are hoping to run an alpha testing programme quite soon, and are inviting people to register interest in taking part by visiting projectrapier.com and signing up. We will provide test users with accounts when we are ready to being testing. Also, please use this form to contact us for more information regarding RAPIER.

The slides we presented at Ecobuild are available for viewing below on slide share. You can also click the link to download the presentation.

Keep an eye on this blog, and on the Project RAPIER website for more further developments!