ASTM E971 - 11

    Standard Practice for Calculation of Photometric Transmittance and Reflectance of Materials to Solar Radiation

    Active Standard ASTM E971 | Developed by Subcommittee: E44.20

    Book of Standards Volume: 12.02


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    Significance and Use

    Glazed apertures in buildings are commonly utilized for the controlled admission of both light and solar radiant heat energy into the structure. Other devices may also be used to reflect light and solar radiant heat into a building.

    Most of the solar radiant energy entering a building in this manner possesses wavelengths that lie between 300 and 2500 nm (3000 to 25 000 Å). Only the portion between 380 and 760 nm is visible radiation, however. In daylighting applications, it is therefore important to distinguish the solar radiant energy transmittance and reflectance of these materials from their luminous (visual or photometric) transmittance and reflectance.

    For comparisons of the energy and illumination performances of building fenestration systems it is important that the calculation or measurement, or both, of solar radiant and luminous transmittance and reflectance of materials used in fenestration systems use the same incident solar spectral irradiance distribution.

    Solar luminous transmittance and reflectance are important properties in describing the performance of components of solar illumination systems (for example, windows, clerestories, skylights, shading and reflecting devices) and other fenestrations that permit the passage of daylight as well as solar energy into buildings.

    This practice is useful for determining the luminous transmittance and reflectance of glazing materials and diffusely or quasi-diffusely reflecting materials used in daylighting systems. For the results of this practice to be meaningful, inhomogeneities or corrugations in the sample must not be large. Test Method E1175 (or Test Method E972) is available for sheet materials that do not satisfy this criterion.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice describes the calculation of luminous (photometric) transmittance and reflectance of materials from spectral radiant transmittance and reflectance data obtained from Test Method E903.

    1.2 Determination of luminous transmittance by this practice is preferred over measurement of photometric transmittance by methods using the sun as a source and a photometer as detector except for transmitting sheet materials that are inhomogeneous, patterned, or corrugated.

    1.3 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard.

    1.4 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    E772 Terminology of Solar Energy Conversion

    E903 Test Method for Solar Absorptance, Reflectance, and Transmittance of Materials Using Integrating Spheres

    E972 Test Method for Solar Photometric Transmittance of Sheet Materials Using Sunlight

    E1175 Test Method for Determining Solar or Photopic Reflectance, Transmittance, and Absorptance of Materials Using a Large Diameter Integrating Sphere

    G173 Tables for Reference Solar Spectral Irradiances: Direct Normal and Hemispherical on 37 Tilted Surface

    CIE Standard

    StandardIlluminator D65


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 27.160 (Solar energy engineering)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 30171600(Windows)


    Referencing This Standard

    DOI: 10.1520/E0971-11

    ASTM International is a member of CrossRef.

    Citation Format

    ASTM E971-11, Standard Practice for Calculation of Photometric Transmittance and Reflectance of Materials to Solar Radiation, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2011, www.astm.org

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