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DesignBuilder Revision History

The summary below lists the changes in the DesignBuilder v4 release.

For previous releases see: v3 revision history, v2 and earlier

Version Released   Description  Incremental Changes
5.0.0.130
N/A
Development Version
  • E+: Important fix for all NCM and ASHRAE library heating schedules to change WinterDesignDay setpoints to use a fixed "on" value instead of intermittent operation - this will change system sizes and hence energy consumption for most simulation models
  • E+: New model option to enter occupancy gains in area per person as well as people per area
  • E+: Fan max airflow rate default now comes from the Design air flow rate on the AHU dialog
  • E+: Fix to allow CustomDay1/2 day types to be used for DHW schedules
  • All: Custom library data no longer copied to new models at the point they are created - part 2 of custom library data mechanism removal
  • All: Fixes for surface thickness of semi-exposed surfaces
5.0.0.125
N/A
Development Version
  • E+: EnergyPlus v8.5 is the default simulation engine
  • E+: Compact HVAC removed
  • E+: CIBSE TM52 outputs allow building category to be selected
  • E+: Fix for tariff block charge numeric formats - extended number of decimal places
  • All: Fix for missing dimension text when drawing partitions
  • All: IGDB updated to latest version
  • All: Removal of the library mechanism UI due to long-standing bugs causing problems with repeated components and missing data - further related changes to be made in future versions
  • Daylighting: Fix corrects minor error in daylight area totals in some reports
  • Optimisation: New tool allows selected design option to be made the current design
5.0.0.099 13 Apr 16 Current Beta
  • Daylighting: Fix to ensure that grids reach to the edge of the working plane as expected
  • All: Improvements to Revit plugin
  • LEED: Many fixes and improvements
  • EMS: Improvements in colour syntax highlighting
  • EMS: New utilities to load EMS variables (DB extensions and Erl)
  • This version includes the changes listed under v4.7.0.027 relative to v5.0.0.068
4.7.0.027
07 Apr 16 Current Release
  • E+: Fix for problem with updating HVAC zone groups after a zone has been deleted
  • E+: Fix for problem where the "Part of total floor area" IDF was not set correctly leading to unoccupied zones such as roofspaces being included in the "Building Area" report
  • E+: Fix for problem where zone mechanical ventilation flow rate can be incorrectly treated in heating design calculations in models with merged zones when flow rate specified using one of the MinFreshAirPerArea, MinFreshAirPerPerson, SumAreaAndPerson, MaxAreaAndPerson and MinFreshAirPerArea options
  • E+: Fix for problem with duplicate component names created when copying condenser loops or adding multiple templates incorporating condenser loops
  • E+: Fix for earth tubes to ensure that fresh air rates are always reported
  • E+: Fix for earth tubes to allow airflow rates to be included/excluded from heating and cooling design calculations
  • E+: Dual setpoint control now available for condenser and plant loops allowing condenser loops to be used for both heating and cooling
  • E+: Summary report breakdown between conditioned and unconditioned areas of the building are now correctly reported
  • E+: Fix for problem with economisers where the wrong SPM can be used in some configurations with draw-through fans leading to poor control and excessive AHU heating
  • E+: Fix for Earth tubes when using IP units where the min/max/delta temperatures were not translated correctly
  • E+: Fix for ASHRAE 90.1 Appendix G System 3 to ensure the correct coil order
  • E+: Fix for a problem with winter design wind speed where a zero value was being used in simulations on systems with a comma decimal separator
  • E+: Implement "Flow/area", "AirChanges/Hour", "Sum", "Maximum" options for the DesignSpecification:OutdoorAir IDF data making IDF clearer and fixing a bug in previous versions with per area data in above options for merged zones
  • E+: Fix for problem where it was not possible to hard set the heating capacity for electric convectors and radiators
  • E+: New generic capacity and COP performance curves for high and low temperature ASHP systems
  • E+: Zone air to water heat pumps now allow all components and sub-components in the zone group to be modified in one shot through a Target tab
  • E+: Option on Load HVAC template dialog to select the level(s) where the Simple HVAC template is loaded removed - always loads to all zones selected
  • E+: Green roof materials now allow the Moisture diffusion calculation method to be selected from "Advanced" or "Simple"
  • E+: AHU connection pipe immediately downstream of AHUs are now shown in grey making it clear that SPMs can't be placed on an AHU connection
  • E+: Shade planes imported from a BIM model can now be controlled on a building by building basis from the first tab of the model options dialog
  • E+: Fixes for JESS online simulations make the system more reliable
  • Daylighting: Fixes for problem where incorrect interior surface reflectance values can be used in Radiance daylighting simulations
  • Daylighting: Fixes for BREEAM reporting to ensure a) both the average daylight factor and uniformity criteria are met before including the zone's area in the total passing and b) a margin of 0.5m is used
  • Optimisation: Numeric variables now use a user-definable step to give more control over the granularity of the solution space tested
  • Optimisation: New "Pause on errors" option allows the user to decide whether to be notified of each error or not
  • Optimisation: Fix for problem where points are displayed on the graph in blue as if they were for the previous generation when actually they weren't
  • Optimisation: Blue "Previous generation" points now only shown when optimisation is running (to help with checking for convergence)
  • All: Fix for problem where component block data is visible at block level causing possible crash when changing component block type
  • All: Fix for problem in recent versions where block editing tools can fail
  • All: "Not adjacent to ground" surface option now works for surfaces adjacent to ground component blocks as well as those at or below ground level
  • All: Fix for ground construction external heat transfer coefficients
  • All: New custom opening clipping algorithm clips windows etc at the point of use (IDF generation, visualisation etc) retaining original opening size in the model
  • All: Fix for problem with non-plan extrusion blocks where ceiling surfaces slightly off horizontal could cause inner volume failure
  • All: Fix for problem where flat roof/ceiling adjacency conditions weren't being picked up correctly leading to incorrect rendering and surface reflectance values being applied in daylighting
  • All: Fix for problem where custom edits on one surface could lead to adjacent co-planar surfaces being flagged as custom as well
  • All: Fix for drag face tool where custom windows could be lost unexpectedly
  • All: Revit plugin reworked with an option to use both new EAM and old methods with a more streamlined UI
  • Simulation Manager: The required version of EnergyPlus is downloaded automatically the first time it is requested and this is now done using http instead of ftp to avoid possible security issues
v5.0.0.068
03 Mar 16
Previous Beta
  • E+: Significant new LEED functionality
  • E+: Improvements to EMS usability including colour syntax highlighting and better key handling
  • E+: All EMS library example code is now portable
  • E+: EMS loops can now be added automatically from the utility dialog making it easy to add sensors/actuators/variables for all zones and  windows. Surfaces to follow.
  • E+: Schedules such as blind and HVAC operation are now loaded automatically with the occupancy schedule when an activity template is loaded to be consistent with the functionality of the "Load data from template" dialog
  • E+: Correct "Pitched roof (occupied)" construction now accessible for roofspace zones merged with occupied zones
  • E+: Improvements for saving Detailed HVAC templates,especially when learning mode switched off
  • E+: Minor changes to the way that the program option controlling the default target for HVAC zone saving settings work and to the terminology used
  • Optimisation: Better error handling for case where the model is edited after variables are set up
  • All: Further improvement for importing imperfect BIM models with gaps
5.0.0.006
21 Dec 15

Previous Beta

  • As v4.6.0.015 but compiled as a v5 beta
4.6.0.015
18 Dec 15 Previous Release
  • E+: Option to save only changed items on all dialogs for Detailed HVAC zones and zone components when saving for multiple zones in an HVAC zone group
  • E+: Fix to allow JESS online account dialog to open reliably from the Simulation Calculation Options dialog
  • E+: Fix for bug which caused windows to be lost when a ground block is moved below it
  • E+: Report included for DX heating coil system heat delivery for unitary systems
  • E+: The option to select multiple or single month cooling design periods added to the Model options dialog
  • E+: Simulation output selections at surface and opening levels for internal surfaces are now reflected to adjacent surfaces
  • E+: The "Location template" and "Hourly weather data" optimisation variables now work as expected
  • E+: Optimisation variables whose underlying model data attributes require a checkbox to be switched on to be active now have an effect even when the checkbox is not checked, e.g. the "Local shading type" variable no longer requires the "Local shading on" checkbox to be checked
  • E+: Optimisation variables and KPIs tidied up, categorised and renamed where necessary
  • E+: Fix for problem on Optimisation Analysis options dialog where grid rows can get out of synch with selection used for edit and delete commands
  • E+: Fix for duplicate plant equipment operation problem in Detailed HVAC which occurs when copying DHW loops
  • E+: Fix to prevent duplicate component names being generated for all HVAC equipment, including copied components
  • E+: Fix for possible issue with Simple HVAC humidity control ensuring that same humidification/dehumidification setpoint is used when only humidification or dehumidification is selected, e.g. avoiding problem with E+ control: "when dehumidification setpoint is lower than humidification setpoint, it uses the lower one as humidification setpoint (even when dehumidification humidistat is disabled)"
  • E+: Lighting template gains loading as been simplified in that both W/m2 and W/m2-100lux data is loaded directly from template without making any attempt when loading W/m2 data to calculate the value using the Target illuminance on the Activity tab and the W/m2-100lux value in the Lighting template
  • E+: Compact schedules with more than 1 space between day types are now allowed for simulation
  • E+: New data for internal nat vent control mode deals with ambiguity in data inheritance from zone level to internal partitions that also inherit from adjacent zone
  • E+: Fix for conversion error when writing electric battery storage data to EnergyPlus
  • CFD: Fix for flow balance problem in some models
  • CFD: Fix for problem with CFD boundaries where it can be possible to add boundaries on surfaces where there isn't enough area to accommodate them
  • CFD: Fix for problem where CFD boundaries can be mistakenly copied from floor to roof surfaces
  • CFD: Fix for CFD display bug preventing components and assemblies from being displayed at site level.
  • CFD: Fix for problem with inserting new CFD grid refinement regions
  • CFD: Zone outlines are highlighted when editing the CFD grid
  • CFD: Fix for problem where CFD fans did not operate as expected at times due to grid alignment subsequent to grid line merging
  • Results Viewer: Fix to problem where sub-hourly results can be displayed with a lag of an hour when loading directly from the Simulation Manager
  • Results Viewer: Fix for error in some energy units for some intervals
  • Results Viewer: Option to display daylight saving time switch over times and correct synchronisation of results
  • All: Fix for offset snap when used for voids and partitions
  • All: Partition end points are now available as snap points when drawing void perimeters
  • All: Fix for mismatch in surface areas between adjacent zones under some circumstances
  • All: Fix for problem where an internal opening could fail to be matched on the other side of an adjacency
  • All: Fix for DXF file handle bug
  • All: Fix for problem in modeller which can cause snap points not to be displayed at certain times
  • All: Fix for problem in Drawing options where required options aren't always displayed when drawing void perimeter using offset snap
  • All: Enhancement to offset snap to join collinear snap segments.
  • All: Fix for light sensor dynamics that weren’t working during a move operation.
  • All: Fix for bug preventing default openings from being re-generated after a building copy
  • All: Leftmost most column of grid data is locked in place where appropriate so that zone name or date etc is always visible even when the grid is scrolled to the right
5.0.0.003 10 Nov 15
Previous Beta
  • As v4.5.0.178 but compiled as a v5 beta giving access to v5 features
4.5.0.178 04 Nov 15 Previous Release
  • E+: DHW consumption rate is calculated explicitly for compact schedules from consumption rate per floor area per day inputs giving a significant improvement in accuracy
  • E+: Various minor fixes for water to air unitary heat pump component
  • E+: Default VRF outdoor unit min part load ratio in templates now set to 0.2
  • E+: Fix for possible crash when attempting to simulate certain VRF configurations
  • E+: Fix for EMS and TM52 outputs numeric when object names are used
  • E+: VAV with Fluid cooler-based condenser now controlled based on dry-bulb outside air temperature instead of wet-bulb temperature
  • E+: Units for Rated Ratio For Air And Water Convection setting on AHU heating coils changed from temperature to non-dimensional
  • E+: Updated HVAC templates (for Simple HVAC) to be consistent with Detailed HVAC
  • E+: Updated Romanian hourly weather category to allow its data to list correctly
  • E+: Fix for crash when generating IDF HVAC data for some systems
  • E+: Fix for ground HX using the 3-Surface option in recent versions
  • E+: Second daylight sensor now displays correctly
  • All: Form shown at program start up the first time the version is run is forced to the top of the window stack to ensure it doesn't get missed
  • All: Form shown at program start up the first time the version is run is now only shown for UK and France
  • All: Fix for error which occurs when clearing data at zone level down to opening level where opening level data is only cleared for the last opening on the surface
  • All: dsb file size reduced from 3MB to 1MB
  • All: Roof window geometry data can now be accessed at surface level
  • All: Fix to filter any invalid component blocks with running the Rebuild adjacency command plus associated error message
  • CFD: Fix for model not displayed when first showing the external CFD analysis screen
4.5.0.148
08 Oct 15
Previous Release
  • E+: When openings with custom attributes are copied at building level they keep the attributes of the source opening
  • E+: Prevent the UA sizing method for Fluid coolers due to problems in E+
  • E+: Minor fixes for JEPlus link
  • E+: Test implementation of E+ v8.4
4.5.0.141 05 Oct 15
Previous Beta
  • E+: HX can now recover heat from  condenser loops (including VRF) for use in DHW etc
  • E+: Default airflow network flow coefficients reduced for "excellent" and "good" crack templates for internal floors
  • E+: Calculated nat vent control mode and modulation settings can now be made at surface and opening levels
  • E+: Fixes for Simulation Manager to fix a potential issue with running JEPlus
  • CFD: Fix for missing options for non-orthogonal surfaces under Advanced tab of CFD tab
  • Visualisation: Anti-aliasing slider restored
4.5.0.140 30 Sep 15
Previous Beta
  • Optimisation: New variables for assessing modulation of Calculated natural ventilation opening sizes
  • Optimisation: DHW can now be included with the Detailed HVAC template variable through the "DHW > On" model attribute when using Simple HVAC activity data
  • Optimisation: New filter option allows intelligent selection of target building zone, surface and opening objects
  • Optimisation: New KPIs for minimising unmet load hours
  • E+: Prevent "Include zone in thermal calculations" option from being used when zone merging is applied pending full fix for a bug which can arise when these 2 options are used together
4.5.0.128 21 Sep 15 Previous Beta
  • CFD: Comfort calculations can now be updated with new options without re-running the main CFD calculation
  • Optimisation: Prevent appearance of parametric analysis data in the display options panel
  • Optimisation: Fix for possible crash
  • E+: Load Detailed HVAC template now retain templates after installing a new version of DB
  • E+: Missing Y-axis label for the "System loads" graphs restored
  • E+: Fix for problem where VRF connections can be lost where more than one connection is made to an outdoor unit and the zone unit is edited
  • E+: DHW water outlet groups can now be added on the demand side of Aux heating loops as well as DHW loops
  • E+: Fix for parametric analysis "Total energy consumption" outputs where PV generation is now correctly accounted for
  • All: Fix to prevent possible case where external opening attributes can be incorrectly applied to adjacent surfaces
4.5.0.120 08 Sep 15
Previous Beta
  • Optimisation: New option to load different Detailed HVAC templates as design variables
  • Optimisation: Fix for optimisation variable targeting where multiple targets are applied
  • E+: Fix for BIPV when using the simple PV performance option
4.5.0.114 03 Sep 15
Previous Beta
  • Optimisation: New KPI added embodied CO2
  • Optimisation: Checks now made to ensure that requested objective and constraint KPIs can be calculated given base model status
  • E+: New option to allow component blocks and solar collectors to be defined as site objects and not rotated with changes to site orientation which can be useful for fixing site definitions and solar panel orientations when optimising for building orientation
  • E+: BIPV constructions can now be set up on the Generator tab of the Electric load centre dialog without the constructions appearing in the model making it easier to allow BIPV constructions to be used as optimisation variables
  • E+: Fix for problem with link between Simulation Manager and Results Viewer when the Simulation description contains characters that cannot be used in file names
  • CFD: Correct defaults now used for the new options to control size and spacing of CFD supply boundaries for surfaces and openings that are not orthogonal with the grid
4.5.0.105 26 Aug 15
Previous Beta
  • E+: Fix for problem with the Simulation Manager in previous beta
  • CFD: New option to define resolution of CFD MRT comfort calculations
  • CFD: New options to control size and spacing of CFD supply boundaries for surfaces and openings that are not orthogonal with the grid
4.5.0.103 25 Aug 15 Previous Beta
  • CFD: New option to show CFD grid when reviewing results
  • E+: Fix for different version number expected in IDF by EnergyPlus v8
  • E+: Fix for cooling design summary output where sensible rather than total cooling load was used to identify the time of peak building cooling load with the coincident sizing option
  • E+: Yes/No written out instead of 1/0 for rain, snow and daylight saving time indicators in design day data
  • E+: Output:Constructions output option written out correctly now
  • All: Revit plugin overhauled to work with DesignBuilder v4.5 including importing thermal properties for all recent versions of Revit
  • All: Fix for problem with profile editor where the custom graph does not update when the category is changed from operation to temperature or vice-versa
  • All: Fixed problem with profile editor where out of scale graph values could not be edited after changing category
  • All: Major update to Revit plugin allows it to work in all recent versions of Revit with the same options as when importing directly into DesignBuilder including fabric thermal properties
4.5.0.097 15 Aug 15 Previous Beta
  • All: Fix for various teething problems with the Load data from template target filter dialog
  • E+: Fix for problem with unitary systems and other systems where a zone is selected from a browse list when using a demo licence or when for any other reason the system is using numeric IDF zone references instead of user-defined names
  • Daylighting: Floor areas in exported summary daylight reports now reflect the whole floor area rather than only the data for the grid
  • CFD: Fix for incorrect error messages
  • Optimisation: List of objective functions extended to include a wide range of options
  • Optimisation: Automatic calculation of list encoding length based on number of list items
  • Optimisation: Pareto archive helps to speed evolution towards optimal solutions - new default settings
  • Optimisation: The Maximise Objective option now works as well as the Minimise option
  • Optimisation: Fixes for single objective optimisation which now converges correctly
  • E+: New HVAC network ‘clean-up’ mechanism to improve HVAC edit performance particularly with large networks
  • E+: New feature to automatically move component pipe and duct connections to prevent them from being lost after making modifications to zone and AHU components which result in a shift in the connection positions (e.g. adding/removing AHU components, adding/removing OA units from zone forced air units, etc.)
  • Fix E+: for bug preventing auxiliary heating loops from being connected to water heater elements
  • CFD: Fix for CFD bug causing boundary planes to be lost (non-orthogonal natural vent elements could be generated lying outside the domain)
  • CFD: Enhancement to CFD grid display to improve clarity. When the edit grid command is active, all boundary elements are displayed in red (including sub-elements) and the grid is displayed in light grey, allowing grid alignment to be seen clearly
  • All: Enhancement to line smoothing mechanism
  • CFD: Fix for CFD bug causing boundaries to lose attributes.
  • All: Fix for bug causing component blocks to be dropped out after block geometry edit. 
  • E+: Fix for bug resulting in duplicate HVAC VRF zone list names.
  • CFD: Fix for CFD natural vent opening percentage/location bug.
  • All: Fix for bug preventing display lists from being created for internal courtyards. 
  • All: Enable drawing grid for mirror command at block level.
  • CFD: Rewrite of CFD natural vent mechanism incorporating user-definable settings
  • All: Fix for component block intersection bug manifest with blocks having a dimension less than 50mm.
  • CFD: Fix for bug preventing display of CFD fan direction arrow from being updated when direction attribute changed at the assembly/component block level.
  • E+: Fix for HVAC chilled ceiling/heated floor control temperature schedule bug in recent versions
  • All: Fix for inner volume geometry bug resulting in openings from being added to external walls in rare cases.
  • CFD: Fix for natural vent bi-directional flow CFD bug (opening elements could end up side-by-side).
  • CFD: Enhancement to CFD solid cell identification (for sloping partitions, etc.)
4.5.0.073
17 Jul 15
Previous Beta
  • Daylighting: Floor areas reported on summary tables are now actual floor areas instead of the illuminance areas (sum of grid areas) that were previously displayed
  • All:Improvements to the Merge models function providing an almost full merge with options
  • All: Fix allows the "suggest translation" to work from the right-click menu for admin users
  • All: Load data from template dialog now has a selection filter making it easy to apply changes to particular parts of the model (e.g. select all South-facing windows)
  • All: Fix for problem in Detailed HVAC models where building model data components and templates cannot be edited from the right click menu
  • E+: New program options on EnergyPlus tab to define the characters DesignBuilder users to construct IDF component names - defaults should now work for EMS scripts
  • E+: Summer design wind speed and direction can now be entered - used for autosizing calculated nat vent simulation models only
  • E+: Delete command active for attached drawing files at building level
  • E+: Update related HVAC VRF outdoor unit names when unit name edited
  • E+: HVAC branch naming modified to prevent duplicate names for HX components
  • E+: HVAC heated floor and chilled ceiling component control temperature schedules now always obtained from component attributes and not from zone SP schedules
  • E+: Fix for site water temperature schedule incorrectly written to IDF
  • E+: Drawing options panel displayed when drawing solar collectors
  • E+: Fix for recent "Go to corresponding HVAC zone" info panel option
  • Revit plugin: Reworking of the mechanism used for the various versions of Revit plus some new export options
4.5.0.062 06 Jul 15
Previous Beta
  • Daylighting: New option to export point by point daylight factor and illuminance data in csv form to spreadsheet
  • Daylighting: Initial test implementation of Daysim for daylight autonomy distribution maps
  • E+: Improvements to optimisation algorithms adding elitism, an upper limit to population size and a new crossover method all help improve solution convergence, especially for constrained cases
  • E+: Fluid to fluid heat exchanger can now be used in a much wider range of cases including for modelling use of ground/lake water for cooling in chilled ceilings
  • E: New set of air to water heat pump (ASHP) HVAC templates
  • E+: Fix for problem with Detailed HVAC humidity control in recent betas
  • E+: New options to go directly to an HVAC zone from a corresponding building zone and vice-versa.
  • E+: Fix for problem in recent betas with Simple HVAC where there is no heating or cooling and mechanical ventilation is double-counted 
  • E+: Improvements to the JESS remote simulation integration and beta test option for accelerated simulations
  • E+: Fix for insulation thickness some ASHRAE constructions
  • E+: New option to load lighting gains from template in W/m2 as an alternative to W/m2-100lux
  • E: The Simulation Manager now allows all but 1 processors on the machine to be used for simulations making full use of server processing capacity
  • E+: New option for simple output definition at building level only, significantly speeds up simulations, especially for large models - new default for new models
  • E+: New option to model building integrated PV panels (BIPV)
  • E+: New Detailed HVAC model option allowing HVAC to be completely disabled without removing the system from the model
  • CFD: Fix for error in PMV calculations
  • All: Licence manager improvements
  • All: First test implementation of a new feature to merge 2 building models - intended for quickly updating existing models with new BIM geometry
  • All: Fix for problem in recent betas where data was not being saved correctly
4.5.0.028 27 May 15
Previous Beta
  • E+: EnergyPlus v8.3 is the default simulation engine providing faster simulations, especially for large models
  • E+: New ground domain options to model ground conduction  effects through slabs and basements in detail
  • E+: New options to define the construction used for conduction of heat through vents
  • E+: Fix for problem using Fanger PMV control with Detailed HVAC using the Detailed HVAC data option
  • E+: Fix for error in construction type used for semi-exposed ceilings when the semi-exterior unconditioned zone is written to IDF first
  • E+: Fix for problem where mech vent was not being excluded when this was requested on heating and cooling design dialogs when using ideal loads option
  • E+: Improvements in settings for newly added beta HVAC systems, esp ASHP, VRF
  • BIM: Improved BIM import mechanism automatically detects when to use surfaces or spaces to create blocks
  • BIM: Imported zones are grouped together into blocks separated by standard partitions
  • BIM: Small report provided after the import
  • All: Custom openings are clipped automatically in cases where changes to the zone geometry require it. Messages are generated to report when this has been done.
  • All: Fix for problem in previous versions where triangular openings were being shrunk to receive frames from E+ but E+ can only apply frames to rectangular windows 
  • All: Fix for roof glazing type used in calculations when AllowPitchedRoof block model option is unchecked
  • All: Fix for problem with unique zone names
  • Daylighting: Option to enter the sky illuminance when the overcast sky option 6 is selected
4.3.0.115 16 Apr 15 Previous Beta
  • E+: New cooling design summary output option for sizing AHUs in which each Cooling system can now be used as the basis for coincidence for the zone loads attached to it - cooling design results from previous versions will be deleted to accommodate this new option
  • E+: Fix for Heating design calculations when using the "Per Person" mechanical ventilation method
  • E+: Scheduled nat vent data is now shown and shaded in green when the Calculated nat vent option is selected to indicate that the data is used in Heating and Cooling design calculations - calculations themselves unaffected
  • E+: Changes to the logic for internal openings in both Scheduled and Calculated  nat vent including a new control option attribute for internal windows and internal vents to allow openings to be controlled either by schedule or according to the logic used by external openings - provides more realistic treatment of internal openings and speeds up Calculated nat vent models with many internal windows, vents or doors
  • E+: New default  for chiller Minimum unloading ratio to avoid possible inadvertent modelling of false loading
  • E+: New outputs provided to allow viewing of temperature profile through surfaces when using finite difference calculation options
  • E+: Fix for EMS "power" and "OR" operators (^ and ||)
  • E+ Partial implementation of E+ v8.3 which runs significantly faster than v8.1, especially for larger/more complex models - this version does not fully support Detailed HVAC when E+ v8.3 is selected. Full implementation expected soon
  • All: Improved default naming mechanism for building and detailed HVAC objects including better handling of accented characters and localisation
  • All: Blocks drawn when one of Left, Right, Front and Back views are set are extruded horizontally by the extrusion height
  • All: View type combo box is reset back to Ortho when it is set to one of Left, Right, Front and Back view and a manual orbit occurs
  • All: Significant improvements in BIM import including an option to allow "open manifold" spaces to be imported and ability to import IES-VE gbXML
  • All: Further internal code simplifications for v4 geometry removing all reference to v3 constructs for link body surfaces and volume/area subtraction
  • All: BIM surfaces are no longer available apart from Shading surfaces
  • All: In U-value calculations for doors on the Constructions dialog, the external resistance is now treated as external not internal to give U-values for external doors as required for BRUKL reports
  • All: In session translation of dialog items through right-click menu and info panel - for DB Partners only
  • Daylight: BREEAM reports are now more user configurable allowing the requirements of the various regions to be accommodated 
4.3.0.090 30 Mar 15 Previous Beta
  • E+: Fix for cooling design summary outputs
  • E+: Lighting control working plane height  can now be set at building, block or zone level with the rest of daylight control data
  • All: BIM gbXML surfaces can now be displayed/hidden at the point of import with better defaults and an option to override on Model options. Only displayed surfaces are included in simulation
  • All: Fix for crash in previous beta when generating reports, SBEM calculation or XML export
4.3.0.087 26 Feb 15
Previous Beta
  • E+: Changes to the way internal natural ventilation openings are controlled - new option to allow internal vents and windows to be either controlled with external openings or by schedule only. Internal doors are now always only operated by schedule.
  • E+: Fix for crash in recent previous betas when generating IDF when comma is the decimal separator
  • E+: Removed "Separate" constructions attributes from parametric/optimisation variable lists
  • E+: Fix for problem where ASHRAE 90.1 constructions were no longer visible in lists after file save operation
  • E+: Detailed HVAC electric radiator template now generates correct component
4.3.0.086 23 Feb 15
Previous Beta
  • E+: Calculated natural ventilation window opening position can now be specified separately for internal, external and roof windows
  • E+: Many fixes and improvements for the new HVAC components including water to air heat pumps, air to water heat pumps, water-side economiser and fluid cooler
  • E+: Natural vented cavity option added
  • E+: Approximate costs added to materials database
  • E+: EnergyPlus v8.2.7 64 bit provided as a test option - not for use on projects!
  • CFD: Uses the same data as EnergyPlus Calculated natural ventilation for window opening position and size and equivalent data on the CFD model data tab removed
  • CFD: CFD fan direction update using data on CFD tab works again after a problem in recent betas
  • All: Developer option to automatically update all externalised non-English language files to use English text where translations have not yet been carried out
4.3.0.063
4 Feb 15
Previous Beta
  • E+: Changes to the way natural ventilation is handled for doors - they are now operated by schedule only, independent of nat vent being activated on the HVAC and any other control settings
  • E: Internal windows now operate only when one or other zone has natural ventilation selected
  • All: Modification to zone identification, removing small perimeter segments that could cause problems with inner volume creation
  • All: Fix for visualisation problem where doors are not correctly displayed
4.3.0.062 27 Jan 15 Previous Beta
  • E+: Use EnergyPlus "AutoCalculate" option to calculate view factor to ground for surfaces - shouldn't affect results as EnergyPlus uses same algorithm as previous versions of DB
  • CFD: Fixes and improvements for the Grid statistics dialog
4.3.0.058
23 Jan 15 Previous Beta
  • CFD: Fanger comfort calculations now use the same algorithm as the Fanger comfort utility dialog accessed from the Tools menu, fixing a problem in cases where the mean radiant temperature is above 32C
  • E+: Various fixes and improvements to the EMS dialogs
4.3.0.054 9 Jan 15

Previous Beta

  • E+: Update to v37 on IGDB Panes database
  • E+: Fix for TM52 outputs where zones have been excluded from the model
  • E+: Fix for solar hot water system tempering valve operation
  • E+: Fix for concave shaped windows
4.3.0.052 3 Jan 15

Previous Beta

  • E+: District heating and cooling options included in Detailed HVAC
  • E+: Optimisation variables can be named
  • E+: New check to prevent multiple variables of the same type being used in an an optimisation or parametric analysis - temporary restriction
  • E+: Fix for Cooling design "External Vent" outputs which were being reported as negative values when they should be positive
  • E+: Partial fix for Insulation and Thermal mass variables - they now work but labels are still numeric
  • All: Block level display problem for 100% glazing
  • E+: Concave shading surfaces split into convex polygons
  • E+: Surface vertices that are separated by a distance of 0.01m or less are now combined
  • E+: Automatic renaming of solar hot water collector performance objects
  • E+: Fix for solar loop availability manager sequencing (previously the differential manager was overriding the scheduled availability manager)
  • E+: Fix for problem where numeric schedule name still used for component block shading surfaces
  • E+: Fix for problem when a schedule with a comma in the name is used
  • E+: Fixes for problems with solar collector performance data naming and component block type
  • E+: Fix for new Cooling design load per m2 output displaying in W/m2 instead of kW/m2
  • E+: Fix for problem with new TM52 output when using zone names with "." characters
4.3.0.040
8 Dec Previous Beta
  • E+: Revert to E+ v8.1 as the default simulation engine due to a bug found in v8.2 which prevents cooling systems from operating when using default DB settings - v8.2 can still be used though as DB errors now trap this issue and provide advice
  • E+: New Simple HVAC sizing option allows flow, capacity or flow and capacity to be limited - provided to help workaround the above-mentioned bug in E+ v8.2
  • E+: New hourly weather data listings for Australia (NATHers), Portugal (LNEG), Germany (DWD) and UK (CIBSE) - the weather data itself is not supplied though
  • E+: TM52 outputs through Results viewer
  • E+: Fix for error in shading control for the HighOutdoorAirTempAndHighSolarOnWindow, and HighOutdoorAirTempAndHighHorizontalSolar options where inside air temperature setpoint was used instead of outside air temperature setpoint
  • E+: Fix for problem with linear thermal bridges where spikes were seen in temperatures
  • E+: Improved IDF readability with user-defined schedule names used throughout
  • E+: New Fuel emission factor database for a range of pollutants allows DB and E+ CO2 emission results to match (Detailed HVAC only) 
  • E+: US state by state and UK NCM 2013 Fuel emission data provided - previous CO2 emission input data on Regions dialog removed
  • E+: Improvements for VRF and Water to air heat pumps
  • E+: Improved formatting for EnergyPlus summary output file
  • E+: Early access to new EMS and FMU feature
  • E+: Prevent setting attributes for internal walls at zone level even when loading from construction template
  • E+: Fix for currency not being converted to non-GBP currencies for local shading devices in results
  • E+: Fixes to improve import of thermal properties from gbXML
  • E+: First test version of combined heat and moisture (HAMT) and EMPD moisture modelling
  • E+: Fix improves IDF opening generation for windows of complex shape
  • All: Evaluation licences now allow Spanish language selection
  • All: Fix to maintain custom openings in a surface after a drag face operation
  • All: Modification to display local shading at surface/opening levels
  • All: Edit screen display modifications enabling filled surfaces for external walls
  • All: Robust mechanism to handle partitions that are coplanar with external walls at higher levels
  • All: New "Adjacency angular tolerance" option to control adjacency identification where there is a small difference in angles between neighbouring surfaces
4.3.0.013 12 Nov 14
Previous Beta
  • All: New command line options allow multiple simulations and file exports to be controlled from a batch program
  • E+: New VRF + DOAS HVAC template
4.3.0.011 10 Nov 14 Previous Beta
  • E+: EnergyPlus v8.2 EXE is the default option
  • E+: New Detailed HVAC VRF systems with templates for Outdoor and Indoor units
  • E+: New Detailed HVAC Water to air heat pumps in unitary and zone units
  • E+: Construction and material names longer than 100 characters are now individually replaced by numeric references without the need to affect all other object and zones names
  • E+: New Cooling design summary outputs: Load/floor area and outdoor temperature at time of peak load
  • E+: Fix for chilled ceilings and heated floors in zones having complex geometry where the ceiling or floor is not entirely covered by radiant heating/cooling elements
  • E+: For Catering, Miscellaneous and Process gains, fuel types 1-Electricity and 2-Natural gas are the only options and gas now uses the E+ "Gas Equipment" data so tariff analysis and fuel breakdowns in E+ summary sheets agree with DB results
  • E+: Fix for error where zone multipliers were applied twice for some system parameters in cooling design calculations
  • E+: Fix for error in partition heat transfer outputs in the specific case where internal mass area has been defined for a zone and surface outputs have also been requested
  • E+: Fix for bug where the 2-DesignBuilder Simple HVAC sizing option was not always used with the HVAC sizing options: 1-Adequate , 2-Manual and 4-Autosize when not set
  • E+: Fix for bug where internal surfaces adjacent to plenums and cavities cannot be simulated
  • E+: Increased upper limit for nominal capacity for Detailed HVAC cooling towers
  • E+: Link body material changed from Simple R-value to a Detailed model to give it thermal mass and prevent E+ simulation failure in some cases where extra cracks are introduced for the Airflow network
  • E+: Fix to prevent supply sub-loops from being connected to heated floors.
  • E+: Improved memory management for IDF generation now allows huge models to be simulated
  • E+: Ensure only 1 set of data for annual simulation outputs fixing a bug in recent versions
  • All: Large model performance issues: a) fix to prevent display lists from being inappropriately built when automatic zoning is turned off, b) modification to prevent blocks with hard voids from being interpreted as non-plan extrusions to avoid cutting zones/partitions.
  • All: Program options: "Show NCM data" and "Show Spanish data" now work as expected and the "Show NCM data" option is now off by default - fixes make it easier to show only particular data sets
  • All: Fix for problem with Fixed flat roof thickness which was being applied to all internal ceilings as well as roofs
  • All: Additional clipping model option provided to allow small areas of openings left following a significant clip to be removed altogether
  • All: Fix for mirror tool bug at surface level.
  • All: Construction layers with thickness from NCM with thickness 0.75m changed to 0.5m so they can be simulated in E+
  • All: Fix to rebuild process that automatically deletes partitions that span different block levels when updating from previous versions
  • All: Semi-exposed wall thickness can now be managed on the Constructions tab correcting a bug in previous v4 releases
  • All: New option to allow Standard component blocks to sit adjacent to walls without affecting openings
  • All: Fix to allow automatic adjacency identification after converting an outline block to component block
  • SBEM: Fix for missing "metal cladding" option on the Constructions dialog when in SBEM mode
  • CFD: Wire frame view is now presented in Ortho making it possible in future to offer more functionality
  • CFD: Fix for bug in CFD opening reveals
  • CFD: Simplified view for single/merged zones in multi-zone models
  • CFD: CFD Simulation Manager toolbar icon made visible fixing bug in v4.2
4.2.0.054 24 Sep 14 Previous  Release
  • E+: Heat recovery can optionally be included in Heating design and Cooling design calculations
  • E+: Mechanical ventilation gains/losses are reported separately for the ideal loads ventilation option in Heating design and Cooling design calculations    
  • E+: Wind pressure coefficient data correctly updated when the site exposure is changed
  • E+: Fix for problem where Comfort output requests not made at building level are ignored at zone level
  • E+: New output option for the energy demand table report
  • E+: Cooling design VAV and Fan coil unit Compact HVAC options removed
  • E+: Fix for bug in linear thermal bridges where a spurious surface resistance was being added previously
  • E+: Fix for glazing output at surface level in Cooling design
  • E+: Fixes for optimisation outputs when using IP units
  • Daylighting: Minor fixes and improvements in Daylighting calculation options and report outputs
  • Daylighting: Working plane height selection for Map output now shown correctly in ft when using IP units
  • All: User interface for new Save data to template option complete
  • All: Introduction of Opening clipping option on Model options dialog to override default mechanism to enable clipping
  • All: New program option allows system libraries to be included/excluded when saving dsb/skh files
4.2.0.034 15 Aug 14 Previous Release
  • E+: New generic contaminant generation and removal option allows simulation and tracking of contaminants as well as options to control them through DCV   
  • E+: New Option for window gas mixtures
  • E+: New global HVAC sizing parameters for Detailed HVAC
  • E+: Fix for error in which HVAC zone names are generated in numeric form
  • E+: Fix for problem with the PTHP defrost function
  • E+: Fix for problem with reporting of window gains in Cooling design
  • E+: Fix for problem with importing v3 models where monthly summer design data was not automatically loaded to the model from template when translating the model
  • E+: Fix for error in temperature range in monthly cooling design data
  • E+: Fixes for viewing Cooling design results when using the new monthly calculation option
  • E+: Fix for DCV HVAC template
  • E+: Fix for crash in the SPM dialog under certain circumstances
  • E+: Many usability improvements and fixes for ASHRAE 90.1 functionality including a speed up for generation of ASHRAE 90.1 construction and glazing data when the climate zone is changed
  • E+: Fix for error in mixing airflow through with virtual partitions used with scheduled nat vent and full exterior solar distribution
  • E+: Removed various constraints on Air loop and AHU dialogs, including requirement for a full fresh air system when sizing the air system using ventilation requirement - this now allows DOAS with DCV    
  • E+: New option for LEED Summary tabular output added
  • CFD: Fix for problem where csv slice data not exported in some cases
4.1.0.042 24 Jul 14 Previous Release
      • All: Ensure only appropriate options displayed on right-click menu on Visualise and CFD screens 
      • All: Fix for ground adjacency issue in previous releases
      • All: Fix for problem where surface is displayed as having a ground adjacency when only a tiny sliver actually is adjacent to ground
      • All: Fix for lost ASHRAE constructions following save, file translation etc
      • All: Clear data to default now works for component blocks at block level and those within assemblies
      • Daylighting: Prevent crash in certain cases when working plane intersects with a single point
      • E+: Earth tube zone airflow included in ac/h outputs
      • E+: Fix for bridging length problem
      • All: Introduction of flat roofs and basement ground floors to surface thickness mechanism
      • All: New Geometry convention template to include the thickness of the flat roof in the zone geometry
      • All: Fix for bug preventing custom openings from being copied properly after a cut operation
      • All: Reinstatement of previous opening mechanism whereby openings that overlap surfaces are discarded by default rather than clipped.
      • All: Fix to prevent crash during inner volume surface thickness process
      • E+: Fix for HVAC plant loop external temperature operation
      • SBEM: Modification of adjacent surface attribute copy to avoid copying IsStronglyVentilated and IsExcludedFromZoneFloorArea attributes
      • SBEM: Block level Add surface and Draw CFD fan tools removed
          • CFD: Fix for inheritance of assembly heat flux - now done on a volumetric basis from assembly level down to constituent component blocks - previous v4 releases will overestimate assembly convective heat flux rates
      • CFD: Prevent negative values for ACE region definition
4.1.0.034  11 Jul 14 Internal
  • Daylighting: Fix for crash in zone with highly complex holes in working plane
  • E+: Reduce max number of building surfaces that can exchange heat with Detailed HVAC radiant systems from largest 100 to largest 10
  • All: Fix for Licensing system to allow it to work correcty for customer details when characters from extended character sets have been used
4.1.0.027 N/A Internal
  • E+: Chiller database default flow mode is now "3-Not modulated"
  • E+: Compact HVAC Unitary multizone now works with Unitary single zone systems
  • E+: Mixed mode control zone can now be selected when using Compact HVAC and scheduled natural ventilation
  • E+: Fixes for error and warning limits and use of IP units on the DX cooling coil dialog for a few data items
  • E+: Compact HVAC Unitary systems without mechanical ventilation operation mode now set correctly
  • All: Fix for missing clone windows at building level option
4.1.0.025 23 June 14 Previous Release
  • E+: Fix for default SPM schedule when loaded manually on supply side of chilled water loops
  • E+: Adjusted temperature setpoint schedules for heated floor templates
  • E+: Various fixes for display issues when using IP units
  • E+: Various fixes and improvements for DCV 
  • E+: Fix for Incorrect command status for scale, rotate, etc. when solar collectors are selected
  • E+: Fix for Incorrect HVAC flow connection when connecting water heaters
4.1.0.018 16 Jun 14 Previous Beta
  • All: Reduction in dsb file sizes relative to previous to previous v4 releases through more efficient database storage
  • All: Fix for problems with custom location templates and custom hourly weather data templates loaded from v3 and earlier
  • All: New program option to include/exclude system libraries in the saved dsb files
  • All: Fix for problems importing complex gbXML models with marginal polygons
  • All: Significant improvement in performance in large models when selecting objects at block level
  • All: Fix for crash in Revit plugin in previous v4.1 betas
  • All: Fix for problem where changes to the Adjacent condition setting on the Constructions tab does not have the expected effect
  • E+: New mechancial and nat vent schedules now included in Activity templates
  • E+: Fix for PIU ADU min hot water flow rate not translated from IP units to SI
  • E+: Fix for case where adjacency was set incorrectly in IDF data when an adjacent zone is excluded
  • E+: Fix for Min/Max temperatures not being saved in "Follow ground temperature" SPMs
  • E+: New option to give more flexibility for scheduled temperature and comfort data outputs
  • E+: 5 DCV options implemented (test version)
  • CFD: Some significant fixes and improvements to the v4 CFD engine
4.1.0.005  2 Jun 14 Previous Beta
  • All: More control over site licences seats which can be checked in/out based on user preferences
  • All: More intuitive behaviour with licensing when more than one licence is loaded - the most valuable licence taking precedence over less valuable ones such as expired or evaluation licences
4.1.0.003 28 May 14 Previous Beta
  • All: gbXML thermal properties import enabled
  • All: Fix for crash in Revit plugin when a recent v4 is installed
  • All: Fix for condensation analysis calculations
  • E+: Fix for DHW in Detailed HVAC where zero zone DHW demand encountered
4.1.0.002 26 May 14 Previous Beta
  • CFD: Fix for problem in previous v4 releases with display of grid
  • CFD: Lower limits for external CFD site domain scale factors reduced to 1.5
  • All: Fix for problem where there is a long delay after the Model options dialog is closed in large models
  • E+: Initial implementation of an interface to the EnergyPlus EMS functionality
4.0.0.137 14 May 14 Previous Beta
  • All: Option to create a template from Model data
  • All: Fix for drawing guides
  • All: Fix for crash when navigating from Visualisation back to Edit screen having navigated down a level in the heirarchy in the Visualisation screen
  • E+: New "fluid type" data now allows mixes of glycol to be included in the fluid on Plant and Condenser loop dialogs
  • SBEM: Unoccupied Pitched roof can now accessed in SBEM mode
  • All: Fix for v4 translation problem
  • CFD: Fix for a problem with incorrect CFD boundary conditions being used
  • E+: Fix for problem leading to incompatible plant connections in Detailed HVAC after adding a humidifier to an AHU
  • All: Fix for Spanish language version in last release
4.0.0.134 24 May 14 Previous Release
  • SBEM: SBEM 5.2.b for Part-L 2013 included and approved 
  • All: New modeller with accurate surface geometry and zone floor area and volumes based on actual construction layer thickness and geometry convention templates
  • All: Boolean geometry, cutting, stretching tools now all guaranteed to generate valid blocks
  • All: New Reflect tool
  • All: New

Latest News

DesignBuilder v4.7 is released!


DesignBuilder SBEM v4.7 approved for England and Scotland EPCs and Part-L2 / Section 6 2015

View webinar recording: Advanced EnergyPlus Modelling with EMS