The Orientation of Village, the Most Important Factor in Rural Sustainability in Cold Climate (Case study: Masuleh and Uramantakht)

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Architectural Engineering, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin, Iran

2 Department of Architecture, Tehran Art University, Tehran, Iran

3 Room 217, Architectural Engineering, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Development, Imam Khomeini International University, Qazvin, Iran


The rural fabric of every village is affected by both human interventions and environmental factors. Also, climate and nature can both influence the village structure. In other words, the climatic and vernacular architecture of rural areas are mutually interrelated, and the villages have to adapt to their environment to survive, provide welfare, and prevent the immigration of villagers to cities sustainably.A very important factor in the sustainability of vernacular buildings is the orientation of rural buildings and the possibility of using solar and wind energy, an issue that has been considered by vernacular builders throughout history. Limited sources of energy and reliance on renewable energy have made the inhabitants design and build their vernacular buildings according to climatic conditions to reduce energy consumption. In this regard, the proper orientation of the buildings to prevent energy loss is of particular importance.This study tries to discuss the factors influencing the orientation of rural housing. The vernacular architecture and the proper orientation of houses in Masuleh (Gilan province, north of Iran) and Uraman Takht (Kurdistan Province, west of Iran) villages are also discussed. The possibility of using key factors of vernacular architecture principles in similar climates is also discussed. Energy simulations with the Honeybee plugin are used as a tool for optimization orientation. Honeybee runs simulations with EnergyPlus through Rhino and Grasshopper software and visualizes results by the Ladybug plugin. For the finding best orientation, the parameters which related to building energy performance defined in honeybee plugin such as windows size and location, wall U-value, glazing construction U-value, glazing g-value, cooling and heating set-point. After energy modeling of building for the case study, the energy simulation has been conducted with EnergyPlus engine and the Ladybug plugin visualized the results.