Bluesky maps solar energy potential of properties from the air
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Bluesky maps solar energy potential of properties from the air

June 17, 2010 -- Aerial survey specialist Bluesky is developing what is thought to be the UK’s first maps of solar energy potential. Created using a variety of high accuracy height data the 3D maps will identify homes and other buildings with roofs that may be suitable for mounting solar panels to generate renewable energy. Bluesky already has access to off the shelf data for the whole of the UK and measurements such as the shape, pitch, size and aspect of building roofs are being extracted - information that is essential when considering the potential for solar energy installations.

“Using data that is already available online at we can create citywide maps of solar energy potential. We believe this is the first time this has been done in the UK and we are following in the footsteps of cities like New York, San Francisco and Boston,” commented Rachel Tidmarsh, Managing Director of Bluesky. “Despite the popular perception of UK weather there exists an enormous potential for solar energy and the solar maps we are creating can be used by home owners to make an initial assessment about the suitability of their property or by Local Authorities or Utility companies to understand the wider potential.”

Solar energy can be harnessed by thermal solar panels or hot water heating solar panels to provide useable energy to power UK homes and businesses. It is estimated that the UK receives 60 per cent of the solar energy compared with locations at the equator. This is equivalent to 1000 power stations. On average each square metre of the UK receives between 900 – 1200kwh each year.

Bluesky already has access to comprehensive range of off the shelf data that can be used to extract information from which to create solar maps including nationwide coverage of Digital Terrain and Digital Surface Models (DTM / DSM), the most comprehensive LiDAR coverage of the UK and highly accurate and detailed 3D building models for all major UK cities. This information can be enhanced with high-resolution aerial photography available from the GeoPerspectives product range, mapping or thermal imagery for property heat loss analysis.

Contact Bluesky sales on +44 (0)1530 518 518