Assessment of the performance of solar panels plays an important part in shaping the design of new developments. Maximising energy generation and financial returns, whilst minimising the impact on neighbouring solar panel installations.
The position and orientation of modules on a roof relative to surrounding obstructions should be carefully considered. Consideration should also be given to the layout of the modules within the panels and the invertor technology adopted.
Solar Panel Assessment - New & Existing
We provide solar panel assessments for both existing installations impacted by adjacent new developments and new solar panels to be incorporated as part of a scheme design.
Our service focuses on providing precise assessments of solar panel positioning and orientation within the context of your new property development. We understand that the strategic arrangement and type of solar panels utilised can significantly impact energy generation, financial returns, and overall project sustainability.
CIS Solar Tower, Manchester. 1960's building retrofitted with over 7,000 Solar PV Panels
Optimisation of New Solar Installations
Many households are considering installing solar panels in response to soaring energy costs. Organisations are turning to large scale solar panel use as part of their ESG commitments. In both instances optimisation of new installations can maximise overall project sustainability.
Our approach encompasses the following key elements:
In-Depth Solar Analysis
Our experienced team assess the annual probable sunlight hours using advanced solar modeling techniques. We assess solar path patterns, assessing both direct solar and diffuse sky radiation. This allows us to identify optimal areas for solar panel installation that receive the maximum available sunlight exposure.
Obstruction Mitigation Strategies
We evaluate potential obstructions such as neighbouring structures, vegetation, and topographical features that could cast shadows on solar panels. Our experts develop tailored strategies to minimize shading and optimize energy yield, ensuring consistent and efficient power generation.
We take into account the property's geographical location, orientation, architectural design, and aesthetic considerations. With these consideration we provide solutions that seamlessly integrate solar panels into the overall development plan.
Assessment of Impact to Existing Solar Panels
With many existing buildings installing solar panels the impact on any existing installation has now become a requirement at planning.
Where a new development is planned which may result in loss of radiation to existing solar panels (either photovoltaic or solar thermal), an assessment should be carried out to comply with Local Authority planning regulation.
For impact on existing solar panels, an initial check using the annual probable sunlight hours (APSH) metric should be carried out. This will determine the sunlight received at the centre of each panel. The APSH should be calculated with and without the proposed development in place.
Our solar panel assessments our carried out in accordance with the BRE publication; ‘Site layout planning for daylight and sunlight: a guide to good practice (BR 209 2022)’.
Impact on Solar PV Panels
For solar PV, it is often the case that the loss of radiation falling on the module is disproportionate to the loss of renewable electricity generation. The latter can be much higher.
For example, a module that sees a 25% loss of radiation could see a reduction of between 25% and 100% of instantaneous performance. This will depend on which part of the module surface is shaded.
Application of module level power electronics (MLPE) as an alternative to a traditional string inverter can mitigate the loss of radiation. If one part or all of a module is shaded MLPE will ensure the remainder of the array can still perform optimally.
Impact on Solar Thermal Panels
For solar thermal collectors, the loss of radiation falling on the collector is approximately proportional to the loss of renewable heat generation. For example, a collector that has a 25% loss of radiation on its surface would see roughly a 25% reduction in instantaneous performance.
For further advice on Solar Panel Assessments or any other aspect of Daylight and Sunlight for planning, please call our Daylight & Sunlight Enquiry Line on 020 4534 3138.
If you’d like us to call you, please fill in our Contact Us form and we will call you back.
BA (Hons) MScLL
Rights to Light
Rights to Light
Service: Rights of Light
M58 Business Park
Welwyn Garden City
Service: Daylight & Sunlight
Service: Rights of Light