[Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

[Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Mon Oct 25, 2010 7:25 am

Skelion, plugin to insert solar photovoltaics and thermal components

Skelion plugin gives Sketchup the possibility to insert solar panels very fast and make fast renewable solar energy studies.
A new free and commercial version have been released. Skelion 5.1.9 (Oct. 2015).
Shadows projection and one and two axis solar tracking.



Automatic Shadows projections:



Insert components in non planar surafaces
It can be used to curved sheds and ground mount systems:


Curved surface

Solar modules inserted in curved surface

3D mesh

Adaptation of Ground mount system to a 3D mesh, all solar components with same orientation.


You can download the plugin at the web page:
DOWNLOAD Skelion 5.1.9 at http://www.skelion.com

_
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Last edited by Juantxo on Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:34 pm, edited 30 times in total.
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Re: Skelion plugin

Postby Krisidious » Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:03 am

how awesome... that's pretty handy.
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Re: Skelion plugin

Postby CAntonis » Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:09 am

Very Nice
I am sure it 'll come in handy! Haven 't tested yet but judging from the video seems you did some fine work!
Thanks.

CAntonis
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Re: Skelion plugin

Postby stbovo » Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:30 am

I agree that this tool can prove extremely handy!! Thanks
Unfortunately it does not work in Mac OSX, I hope for an update soon, that can resolve this issue...
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:17 am

A new version has been released with some bugs fixed and a commercial version with more features.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby thomthom » Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:22 am

At the office we use Trend Micro security software and for some reason it blocks the site. It seem to have been black listed.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:08 am

http://skelion.netne.net/ is a free hosting. May be it is the reason.
In the future I'll change the hosting if I'll see interest in the plugin, but not now.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby thomthom » Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:26 am

Yea - it's a potential problem with shared hosting.
I'll have to check it out when I get home. I can't get around Trend's blocking. :(
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby watkins » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:00 pm

Dear Thomas,

Here is a zipped copy I downloaded from the site.

Regards,
Bob
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby jwood2012 » Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:00 pm

So when I unpack the skelion.zip file the the script files have file extension rbs not rbz
consequently the files are not recognized as Ruby scripts by Sketchup. When I change the
file extension to rbz sketchup recognizes the file but is unable to install it referring
me to the installation instructions which are

Download SKELION plugin "skelion.rbz" from the Download Button and save it
In Sketchup 8 M2 (last version): Go to Window - Preferences - Extensions - Install Extension
Select "skelion.rbz" and accept to install it.
Accept license and restart SketchUp
Activate SKELION toolbar [View/Toolbars/Skelion]

So can anyone help me with the installation?
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Gaieus » Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:14 pm

Jim, RBZ is a new file format (with M2) and it is actually a renamed ZIP archive (RBZ = RuByZip). RBS is a scrambled RB ("RuBy") file and you need (and can) not do anything with it.

Either simply copy the RBS file into your plugins folder or rename the ZIP file to RBZ and use the new installer. It will know what to do with it (unpack, install etc.)
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby thomthom » Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:33 pm

jwood2012 wrote:So when I unpack the skelion.zip file the the script files have file extension rbs not rbz
consequently the files are not recognized as Ruby scripts by Sketchup

http://www.thomthom.net/thoughts/2012/0 ... -sketchup/
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:35 pm

Sorry jwood2012, you need to clear the cache of your browser to download current version.
The problem is you downloaded an older version.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby TIG » Wed Feb 08, 2012 8:16 pm

Jim

Read this: viewtopic.php?p=315127#p315127
which is the best guide to extracting and installing the contents of a .ZIP archive.
The .RB/.RBS file-types within a .ZIP or the extracted folder[s] are equivalent in their operation - it's just that you can't 'read' a .RBS file as it's been 'compiled'.

IF one day you should download a .RBZ you can install it in v8M2Pro via the menu item Window > Preferences > Extension > 'install archive' button...
IF you are brave enough to rename a .ZIP file suffix to .RBZ file you can then install it that way too.
Conversely if you have a .RBZ file you can make it into a .ZIP file by changing its suffix, and using the methods outlined for that archive type in the above link...
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Hampson » Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:22 pm

I really like this plugin for SketchUp, had I'd known about it from the very beginning it would have helped me produce models quicker and easier.

Anyway, my main question regarding the plugin is how do I get it to maximise the full area when laying down solar panels? For example, I put a 16" offset from the edge of a residential roof. After selecting the now smaller area and when I have plugged in the tilt/azimuth, etc., the panels don't take up all the space available. They seem to work from the middle > out. I had to move them to one side to add an additional 2 rows within the same space.

Is this just in the free version or is it deliberately set up like this?
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:51 pm

Please, send the model or an image please.
Plugin insert panels in rows, from down to the top, and centering panels of each row from borders.
Actually not maximize space in vertical. User must sometimes modify rows. May be in a future it will be improved.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Hampson » Thu Feb 09, 2012 5:27 pm

I must have been entering something wrong as it seems to match it now on some of our previous models we've done.

However, I did notice on the following attachment, that it doesn't seem to align itself along the roof edge and thus having an angled system from top left to bottom right.

Judging by the measurements we can get two rows of panels aligned with the rooftop edge, but just wanted to throw this out to you.

Cheers
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Thu Feb 09, 2012 10:50 pm

Thanks for your post. Some people have problems understanding how to insert panels. So I think it's necessary make a video to teach how to insert solar panels, co-planar or with some tilt, over the roof.
With the plugin you can insert panels like you want, but it's necessary understand the concept of azimuth and tilt relative. This concept it's a bit dark...
Selecting an edge and a face, and using the rights azimuth and tilt relative you can insert the panels in many ways.
We'll try to make a video...
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:37 pm

stbovo wrote:Unfortunately it does not work in Mac OSX


Finally, last version of Skelion runs on MAC.
Thanks to Dan Rathbun, driven and thomthom for their help in the task.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Wed Feb 22, 2012 11:40 pm

Hampson wrote:Anyway, my main question regarding the plugin is how do I get it to maximise the full area when laying down solar panels?...


Maybe with this video you will be able to understand better how plugin works inserting components.

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Last edited by Juantxo on Mon May 07, 2012 11:18 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby driven » Thu Feb 23, 2012 3:26 am

Oddly, a friend asked me yesterday if I could draw up some solar panels on his house.
and the mac version arrives...

however, I only get one grey button, with no functionality, and no errors in ruby console.

As I can't see the script, I can't see what paths are expected.

Sketchup installed [via the rbz] into my ~/Library/ path, not not the normal HD/Library path.
The html for the license and one blank toolbar is all I got...
Possibly a paths issue.
does it have any dependencies? or require statements?

john
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:24 am

It will be a path issue or maybe you downloaded an older version. I had some problems in the web with browsers cache. Today I changed the name of file so name is "skelion_v52.rbz" for no confusion.

Plugin uses only one require,
require 'sketchup'
and statements similar to:
Sketchup.find_support_file "_1angles.html" ,"Plugins/_skelion"
Sketchup.find_support_file("moon_16.png", "Plugins/_skelion/images")

With normal users, and stored in normal path of a MAC, ir works. "Library/Application Support/Google Sketchup 8/Sketchup/plugins/"
May be is related with uppercase "Plugins" "plugins" or the place you are storing files....
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby thomthom » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:45 am

@Juantxo: Avoid using Sketchup.find_support_file to determine the path for your plugin - it might not be in the default SketchUp folder at all. Some times OSX users place then in their User folder - and some users place their plugins in a shared folder elsewhere.

Instead use the __FILE__ constant that returns the name and path of the current file.

Example:
Code: Select all
root_path = File.dirname(__FILE__)
support_folder = File.join( root_path, '_skelion' )
image_folder = File.join( support_folder, 'images' )
 


That makes the plugin robust to any location it might be installed to.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:40 pm

driven wrote:Sketchup installed [via the rbz] into my ~/Library/ path, not not the normal HD/Library path.

Now is fixed. Download "skelion_v503.rbz".
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby masonc » Thu Mar 01, 2012 3:14 am

I've tried the extension renaming trick, Sketchup still doesn't allow me to select the RBZ file. Any other way to get this done?
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby thomthom » Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:47 am

masonc wrote:I've tried the extension renaming trick, Sketchup still doesn't allow me to select the RBZ file. Any other way to get this done?

You could try this plugin to help: viewtopic.php?t=42315#p375454
Simplifies installing .zip, .rbz, .rb, .rbs plugin files to your plugin directory.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby masonc » Sat Mar 03, 2012 11:15 pm

Juantxo wrote:
Hampson wrote:Anyway, my main question regarding the plugin is how do I get it to maximise the full area when laying down solar panels?...


One of the features you should consider adding is a roof edge spacing, as in, I want to calculate the amount of PV on this roof, here is the panel, here is the tilt, I want to remain 18" from the edges as per best practices. It would make it easier to calculate the maximum PV given a certain roof shape.
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:27 pm

Ok, maybe in next release multiple offset could be added.
If you need it a lot, you can install one of those plugins:

Multiple face offset
Multiple offsets
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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby Juantxo » Mon May 07, 2012 11:44 am

A new version (skelion_v504) has been released.
Now you can pile up components in same row and distribute rows in same grid with "rows alignment". A user's guide has been added too.

Sun path chart plots has been added as free features to the plugin:



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Re: [Plugin] Skelion (solar, shadows)

Postby vladglebov » Thu May 31, 2012 3:46 am

Just purchased the Pro version but would be helpful to have a better tutorial... having lots of trouble figuring it out.
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