Skip to main content

Building with the Sun. Passive Solar Daylighting Systems in Architecture

  • Conference paper
  • First Online:
Nearly Zero Energy Communities (CSE 2017)

Part of the book series: Springer Proceedings in Energy ((SPE))

Included in the following conference series:


Architects have always been fascinated by light. So much that the most well-known definition of architecture, given by Le Corbusier refers to volumes and light: “Architecture is the masterly, correct and magnificent game of the volumes brought together under the light”. The great architect, Lous Kahn, considered that “The Sun does not realise how wonderful it is until after a room is made.” Accommodating natural light in the building is an architectural approach that leads to a passive gain as, by design, natural light is brought into dark spaces by means of architectural elements or specialized construction systems. Solar light pipes (seem to) have been the oldest systems and were used in Ancient Egypt, as means to bring light into dark places. The principle, forgotten for centuries, reappeared sometime in the mid-nineteenth century, was again forgotten and is once again reinvented today, being used in different buildings and spaces, with the same scope: to bring natural light into dark spaces. Not only the characteristics of natural light are beneficial for the living beings - animals and plants - but bringing daylight in (otherwise) dark spaces also saves energy- as we deal with passive systems - while creating new characteristics of the architectural space and image. The aim of the paper is to present a general view on the passive solar daylighting systems in architecture as well as a case study finalized in Romania.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this chapter

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or eBook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

USD 29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
USD 169.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book
USD 219.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info
Hardcover Book
USD 219.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Institutional subscriptions

Similar content being viewed by others


  1. Transition to Sustainable Buildings. Strategies and Opportunities to 2050 in Accessed Apr 2017

  2. Accessed Apr 2017

  3. Accessed Apr 2017

  4. Accessed Apr 2017

  5. The advertisment of the Chappuis’ Reflector (1880). Accessed Apr 2017

  6. The W. Hanifch & Co. Reflektor, Otto Lueger Lexikon der gesamten Technik (1904). Accessed Apr 2017

  7. A New and Complete Dictionary of Arts and Sciences, vol. 2, p. 1600, London (1763). Accessed Apr 2017

  8. Accessed Apr 2017

  9. Accessed Apr 2017

  10. Dabija, A.M.: The solar corridor of the historic building of UAUIM. In: European Symposium of Diversity in Sustainability, Bucharest, 11–13 April 2016

    Google Scholar 

  11. Dabija, A.M.: Using the Sun 24 Hours/Day in a Dark Corridor - a case study. In: International Conference on Future Electrical Power and Energy Systems (ICFEPES 2012) (2012)

    Google Scholar 

  12. Promotion of architectural solutions for building-integrated photovoltaic systems- PASOR IPA, Polytechnic University Bucharest, West University Timisoara, Technical University in Timisoara, “Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urbanism, Bucharest (2010–2017)

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ana-Maria Dabija .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

Copyright information

© 2018 Springer International Publishing AG

About this paper

Cite this paper

Dabija, AM. (2018). Building with the Sun. Passive Solar Daylighting Systems in Architecture. In: Visa, I., Duta, A. (eds) Nearly Zero Energy Communities. CSE 2017. Springer Proceedings in Energy. Springer, Cham.

Download citation

  • DOI:

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-63214-8

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-319-63215-5

  • eBook Packages: EnergyEnergy (R0)

Publish with us

Policies and ethics