Below is a list of the most important news in previous versions of IDA ICE.
Highlights in 4.6
New help center
The help system has been improved. Apart from an updated user guide, context sensitive help and process guides with tutorial movies, a completely new knowledge database/user forum has been added, which gives a new level of support to all types of users. A new Download & Info Center has been created with change logs, known bugs, validation reports, certificates and additional documentation.
New climate file download center and file formats
A new download center makes it easy to select the weather files that you need. More than 3000 worldwide ASHRAE IWEC2 weather files are now available.
New features in the visualization kit:
Glazing and shading from detailed window
Design glazing and shading properties in the detailed window model, calculate and save the key parameters, and they are available in the simple window model.
More options at the standard level
IDA ICE Viewer
A free viewer makes it possible to open simulated project files, look at results and run 3D animations. Project files can be exported from IDA ICE to a protected format which is only possible to open in IDA ICE Viewer.
External window shades, shading buildings and imported shading objects now include a transparency parameter so that semi-transparent shades can be defined.
New 3D animation
It is now possible to log and animate window integrated shading.
Improved 3D navigation
The navigation in the 3D view is now easier than ever with mouse wheel zooming and a function to zoom in on selected objects.
Hightlights in 4.5
Early Stage Building Optimization (ESBO)
ESBO is a new IDA ICE wizard that simplifies early stage building optimization. It allows you to experiment with variations in both building and systems with an absolute minimum of user input.
Renewable energy systems
New models for heat pumps, solar collectors, stratified storage tanks, boreholes, CHP, wind turbines, PV and other free energy sources make it easy to simulate innovative systems.
Complex zones and buildings
It is now possible to use arbitrary geometries for both zones and building bodies, including models with holes. The geometries are imported from SketchUp or other geometry tools. Objects may be moved in the 3D view.
New 3D look
A completely new 3D look, similar to SketchUp. Other improvements include shadows falling on the ground and the possibility to toggle zone wall thickness, x-ray view of external shades, imported objects and IFC models.
New 3D animations
A new type of arrow animations in 3D has been added, visualizing ventilation air flows, window energy balance and wind velocity vector. Selected variables can be displayed in a table in the 3D view during animations.
Façade windows and shading objects
Windows, openings and shading objects can now, directly from the 3D view, be inserted into a building body, which speeds up the workflow significantly. A new grid object enables efficient management of large groups of repeated objects such as windows.
Improved zone form
A new improved zone form with 3D view and summary tables has been developed. The new summary tables make it easy to view and edit all important zone level input data.
New custom controls
It is now possible at the standard level to customize your own controllers for all devices such as room units, blinds and lights. Supervisory controllers may also be defined at both the zone and building levels.
Multiple area definitions
Support for different types of floor area metrics. It's also possible to set the zone or building floor area explicitly to match exotic area calculation standards.
Improved zone loads
More flexible handling of zone loads. Support for multiple light objects. Domestic hot water may be specified as a function of time and on the zone level. Equipment can now emit water mist and an equipment utilization factor has been added.
New thermal bridge elements have been added. The new elements support inner corners and inner walls meeting external slabs.
Discrete-time (sampled) controllers; new input data report; externally updated resources – to manage group, project or company libraries, etc., etc.
Highlights in 4.2
The Process Guide helps to get started in new projects. Here the basic steps for constructing a model are listed, with direct links to the place in the user interface, to instructive movies and to help texts.
Forms now expand automatically when resizing the application window. This will radically improve the use of screen real estate for users with big screens, especially regarding the appreciated input data tables.
New input data tables added for setpoints, room units, energy meters and HVAC systems in the General tab. A new system for adding even more tables in the future has been developed.
3D visualization of surface data
For the Surfaces input data table, the columns Type, Construction and U-value are now shown in the 3D view, also separately for every subsurface. This makes it much easier to visually verify that constructions have been defined as intended.
Energy meters button added
A button to show usage of energy meters has been added, making it much quicker than before to find how meters have been used.
New zone sensor
A new zone sensor object for reading a zone's variables in AHU and Plant simplifies cycling of AHUs.
The windows in the Window menu are shown in hierarchical structure. This makes it much easier to locate windows that have been covered on the screen, especially when several models are open.
Drag-and-drop of variables
Support for dragging (drag-and-drop) additional variables into cross-dependency (scatter) plots. This makes it easy to generate for example a plot of hourly energy use as a function of outdoor temperature.
Batch mode enhancements
It is now possible to run heating/cooling design and energy calculations in batch mode, as well to run scrips (without popup dialogs).
User defined lighting control
It is now possible to define your own control strategy for lighting.
Highlights in 4.1
Undo and Redo
Unlimited undo/redo has been added.
Support for SketchUp format
It is now possible to import shading objects using SketchUp models (.skp).
Enhanced IFC import
Improvements to the IFC import has been done, especially when positioning doors and windows in walls, improved external corners and support for multilevel spaces.
It is now possible to sort variables, to have multiple stacks and to draw values in stack bar diagrams. Tooltips and context menu works now with area diagrams and with bar chart diagrams. More options have been added for the axes.
Visualization of twist and tilt
It is now poissible to visualize the horizontal twisting and vertical tilting of window surfaces.
Listing of shading layers
The shading layer of detailed windows are shown in the list of windows.
New alternative for infiltration units has been added: m3/(h.m3 ext. surf.)
NMF and Modelica source code is now colorize, which makes it easier to read.
Zones can be resetted to the current template.
Refresh 3D view
It is now possible to rebuild the building in the 3D view.
Memory limit added
It is now possible to manually set the memory limit utilized by IDA ICE.
Highlights in 4.0
The new real-time 3D environment makes it possible to illustrate input and output parameters and to get animated results, including solar and shading graphics. It also adds an overview during all steps of a project and provides impressive presentation graphics. You can quickly edit properties by simply clicking, e.g. a wall or a window in the 3D-model.
New overview tables allow the user to get a complete overview of individual parameters of complex models. You can view and edit all important input data in tables and see, e.g., useful totals for floor areas, u-values, external wall areas, etc. These tables can also be transferred to and from Excel. Most parameters can be visualized in the 3D environment.
3D BIM import*
Support for import of 3D models in IFC (Industry Foundation Classes).
Cooling, heating and energy
A simple procedure for calculating and reporting cooling, heating, air demand and energy has been added.
Version Handling System*
The Version Handling System allows you to keep track of changes between model versions and also to automatically rerun all cases that depend on a change. It can be used to retain manual advanced level operations when a change has been made at the standard level.
Improved support for Air Handling Units and Local Units
A range of new pre-defined AHUs have been added, e.g. for night cooling and simultaneous feedback control of zone temperature and humidity. Zones may be served by multiple AHUs and custom built local units, e.g. fan-coils, local ACs and heat pumps.
Support for more complex building and roof geometries. A separate Roof Editor makes it easy to define and modify roof constructions.
Improved demand-controlled ventilation strategy where a combination of carbon dioxide concentration and temperature can be used.
Custom control systems*
For VAV-systems, window shading and openable windows it is now easy to make custom-made control systems at the standard level. An extensive library of control function blocks is included.
An advanced algorithm for how solar beams are hitting and penetrating the building has been added. It also takes into account whether the beams passes several layers of internal windows.
New window model*
A new pane-by-pane window model according to ISO 15099 has been added. Available in the Enhanced Window Models extension.
Model searching and differencing*
Easy to search models and to list differences between models. Differences can also be captured as editable scripts, the application of which will convert one model to the other.
Diagrams and reports
Improved diagrams and reports. Supports larger plot-files. Signals can be dragged between diagrams for comparison. Reports are based on HTML with tables that will remain tables when moved to Excel.
Support for models written in the Modelica equation-based language.
Easy to download and install climate files to the database. EPW files can be directly downloaded and installed from any public site.
* Available in the Expert edition.