List of scientific studies, download here

Outcomes of some studies

GUIDEHOUSE STUDY, 5 November 2021, Solar shading – Synergising mitigation of GHG emissions and adaptation to climate change: the potential to disrupt rising cooling demand and overheating in buildings

The Guidehouse study in comparing AC to Solar Shading as solutions to reduce overheating in buildings shows that automated solar shading can significantly reduce the energy use of buildings, up to 60 % by 2050. Solar shading can also drastically mitigate GHG emissions, up to 100Mt accumulated savings can be achieved between now and 2050, while at the same time adapting the European building stock to climate change effects. Finally, a shift from AC to more solar shading would come at a lower total cost whereby a massive 14,6 billion €/year could be saved in investment and energy consumption for space cooling by 2050.

Download study 

HOW TO PROTECT BUILDINGS FROM OVERHEATING? A South-West facing flat in an old converted office building in North London was able to reduce temperatures from a scorching 47.5C to a more acceptable 28C by using external solar shading. 

Read the Case Study conducted by the London South Bank University and The British Blinds and Shutters Association.

The study demonstrated how solar shading (external /internal) when combined with night-time ventilation can be an effective method in reducing operative temperature increase in an urban flat.

The result was that you can cool a room with 11 to 18 C degrees with external shading and 8 to 13 C degrees with internal shading.

Download study ; presentation

 ESCORP 2005, by Physibel

When the solar shading industry makes a claim of energy savings, it should be able to demonstrate and quantify such savings. That was the object of the scientific study ES-SO commissioned in 2005, the report called 'Energy Saving and CO2 Reduction Potential from Solar Shading Systems and Shutters in the EU25', in short ESCORP-EU25 for the 25 member states. Physibel, an experienced and specialized Belgian building physics company, carried out the study and used the building simulation program CAPSOL, which has been validated according to standard ISO/FDIS 13791 (Thermal performance of buildings – Calculation of internal temperatures of a room in summer without mechanical cooling – General criteria). The study concludes that solar shading, if applied systematically, could reduce the energy needed for the built environment by almost ten percent. In the report you will find full information on the basic assumptions - and they are important!
Read the full report, download here
Executive summary: English - Dutch
One-page summary: English

Dynamic shading solutions for energy efficient buildings, by Sonnergy 2015

This study includes an update of the figures of the ESCORP report:

If 75% dynamic shading in Europe installed:

For an energy end-use split of 70:30 between space heating and space cooling the impact of dynamic solar shading systems is estimated to be a 30% saving in cooling energy use of 23.9 Mtoe/yr and a 14% saving in heating energy use of 25.4 Mtoe/yr. Taken together the potential energy savings which can accrue from the use of dynamic shading systems are a 19% saving in heating and cooling energy use of 49.3 Mtoe/yr and a carbon emissions reduction of 19% equivalent to a saving of 117 MtCO2/yr.

If in the future more cooling would be needed: energy end-use split of 50:50 the impact of savings for energy use and carbon emissions reduction in buildings will even add up to 22%. Read more on page 21 of the executive supmmary report, download here.



Impact of Shading Devices on Daylight Quality in Offices, report TABK, Lund University- by Marie-Claude Dubois
This study includes a literature review, parametric studies of energy use, the development of design tools, measurements as well as simulations of daylighting in rooms with shading devices. The following principles were drawn:

  • Shading devices can reduce thermal losses through the window significantly.
  • The potential for energy savings is much greater with a simple exterior shading device with a low g – value than with any solar-protective glazing as the shading device can be removed during winter and the free solar heat gains can be utilised to offset the heating demand. This is a significant factor to consider in countries where the heating demand is dominant.
  • Simple tools for early design stages must provide detailed information about the solar angle dependent properties of the window and the heating and cooling demand in the building.
  • An optimum solution may be to combine a very efficient (low g-value) exterior shading device like an awning to prevent overheating in the summer, spring and autumn, with an interior device with a high g-value like to control daylighting, even in December.
  • Shading devices should change the direction of the incident light rays, either by pure diffusion or by redirection (preferably towards the ceiling) as in the case of a venetian blind. The best shading devices are the ones which block or redirect direct light and let diffuse lighting come into the building.
  • For a good entrance of daylighting a screen transmittance of around 15 % appears to be optimum for a south-oriented room with a medium window size.
  • Download the full report, here
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