Champions of clean power have prolonged argued that New York City has amazing solar potential. Despite the fact that Manhattan’s vertical skyline may not be perfect, the outer boroughs — full of broad, flat roofs on low-rise buildings — have the proper physical traits to support large solar arrays. Just as important, the demand patterns in the Massive Apple also match solar’s strengths: New York City’s electricity demand is highest on these sunny, sweltering summer days when apartments, offices, and retailers alike are cranking their air conditioners.

Now there’s some difficult data that supports these theoretical claims. Yesterday, the New York City Solar America City Partnership, led by Sustainable CUNY, released the New York City Solar Map. The map exhibits current solar installations (photovoltaic and water heating) in the city and, more importantly, provides detailed estimates for the likely solar gains throughout the 5 boroughs.

Essentially the most impressive takeaway, as Mireya Navarro reported inside the New York Instances, is the fact that a complete two-thirds of New York City’s rooftops are suitable for solar power, and these “could jointly produce adequate power to meet half the city’s de`mand for electrical power at peak intervals.”The map is developed on a laptop or computer model that makes use of a substantial amount of information, which consists of, based on the map’s website, “the position with the sun, general atmospheric circumstances, latitude, and most importantly, shading.” The amount of shade is determined using advanced LIDAR data that was gathered in some low-altitude flyovers with the city final year. This LIDAR information might be utilized to create a virtual 3D map of the city, enabling for simulations with the sun tracking through the sky and also the resulting shade moving across rooftops.