North Orientation


How do you determine North Orientation for shadows to be accurate?


North is only one of four parameters you must set to display shadows that accurately portray the real world.
• Geographic Orientation — Relationship of True North to the model.
• Geographic Location — Latitude and Longitude
• Time — Year, Month, Day, Hour and Minute
• UTC Offset — The difference between local time and the Coordinated Universal Time standard.

By default, the +Y solid green Axis is true north to the shadow engine.
However, the +Y Axis is no longer true north if you geo-locate the model via SketchUp’s Add Location.

I find the simplest, most direct approach to shadow analysis is to manually geo-locate the model.
Window > Model Info > Geo-location > Set Manual Location
• Build the model along the Default Axes.
• Install the Solar North plugin (SketchUp Pro only) if you haven’t already done so.
• Use the Solar North tools to set true north in relation to the model.

Solar Modeling - How to
Shadow Timezones

Thanks - great explanation.


I also use manual location the most. Often I have no interest of the imagery, and I don’t want to have to manually restore true north to the Y axis as a separate step. It’s a pity that the Add location feature is designed in such a way that we both prefer to entering the coordinates ourselves :confused: .


This well could be implemented in an extension😃?


Nah, extensions are great for adding new functionality, especially if oustide or at the edge of the scope of the main program. When a native feature however isn’t ideal I think it’s better to polish it a bit than stacking it with a similar feature that has to be rewritten from scratch.