There is an increasing demand for accurate product information in building design
ES-SDA calculates energy performance figures for solar shading products in combination with glazing
ES-SO created ES-SDA to assure validated and credible data is provided to the market
ES-SO created ES-SDA to assure validated and credible data is provided to the market

ES-SDA European Solar Shading Database

To support the EU Qualicheck project that is designed to provide accurate data for construction products, the European Solar Shading Organisation (ES-SO) has developed a database of solar shading materials. This database includes independently validated performance data of blind fabrics, materials and complete products to European standards so comparison between blind types and materials is simple, secure and validated.

Manufacturers' data is now being submitted for inclusion and will be added as the peer review process is completed.


Shading devices have been used for centuries to help make the internal environments of buildings more comfortable. Buildings in hot climates traditionally have small windows, overhangs or are orientated to minimise heat gain in the summer. The basic science is common sense, but  its application is not yet common practice everywhere.

Solar shading is a proven energy saving technology and the purpose of this guide is to understand how to maximise benefits. It is estimated that if the equipment already installed in our buildings was used efficiently, building energy costs could be reduced by as much as 10% and this is discussed further in Appendix - B (Behaviour change).

For commercial and public buildings, solar shading can have a positive impact on: cooling, daylight utilisation, glare control, glazing systems and heating. To meet the economic and environmental imperatives of a building design and refurbishment, a holistic approach is a prerequisite. Solar shading should be ideally considered at the beginning of a project, which then provides further opportunities for HVAC cost reductions and easier integration with the façade and building services.

For dwellings, blinds, awnings and shutters can help save precious heat in the winter and keep homes cooler in the summer. To assess the type of shading that is required for any building, it is necessary to have a basic understanding of the different effects of the sun’s radiation. The purpose of this guide is to explain how buildings can benefit from solar shading can be used to save energy and how to control the sun’s effects that change constantly throughout the day and the seasons.

As it is not possible to forecast the exact impact of the weather on a building, optimal shading should ideally be dynamic to react to constant changes. Consequently there is not a simple ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution and so this guide does not provide specific product solutions. That advice should be sought from your chosen supplier based on the checklist of requirements outlined in Appendix - C (Checklist of requirements of solar control management).