top of page
This was a project done for advance sustainable systems at Cal Poly Pomona, all work shown is strictly mine.

Sustainable Design Modeling At Neutra's VDL 2

Model of the VDL 2

Nuetras VDL 2 in Silverlake California fails at being an early attempt at sustainable living in the Southern California climate.  The most glaring problem with the VDL is that it is cold. There is far too much glass to act as effective insulation for the house during the winter. But it is extremely efficient in the summer as the Computer Fluid Dynamic analysis below shows the house works extremely well at creating air currents to cool the building with minimal breeze.  The daylight analyses below also show sunlight is kept out of the non louvered living room space in the summer and allowed to shine in during the winter months.

Daylight Analysis

These images in the slider to the left show the VDL at three different times during the year.  Mid Winter at 3pm, Mid Spring at 3pm, and Mid Summer at 3pm.  The lines indicate the chance of glare. Blue next to green is fine, but as you can see blue next to bright red would indicate glare within the building.  This analysis was done to see if sunlight could enter the building during the winter and be kept out during the summer.  This was, in fact, the case.  Unfortunately there was no thermal mass to capture the heat let in during the winter to warm the room at night. 

Daylight Factor

Daylight factor is an average of the lighting in a building throughout the year.  2% is considered a good daylight factor.  These images show the average for the VDL 2 as far above what is needed as would be expected.  Daylighting is not a problem in the VDL 2; no lights are needed anywhere in the building during the day. 

Computer Fluid Dynamics

Air Flow Rate

The analyses to the left suggest that the operable windows in the VDL 2 work very well for the two main living spaces on the first and second floor, but fail to be effective in the bedroom wings.  We would suggest that the windows in the bedroom wing were made operable to fix this problem; however, the building is historic, and any such changes would be considered a degradation of the original. 

Revised Model0002
lenihan Scenes30001
Finished Model Kauai0005
bottom of page