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Google introduces new environment APIs: the Solar API

By October 10, 2023Blog, Google Maps

The need for clean, renewable energy solutions has never been more pressing in a world grappling with a growing energy crisis, surging electricity costs, and mounting environmental concerns. Solar energy is projected to account for a substantial two-thirds of the anticipated increase in global renewable capacity in 2023. This increasing international interest in solar energy is exemplified by a 60% spike in Google searches for “rooftop solar power” in the previous year alone. All this has led Google to launch a new suite of environment APIs. Recently, we presented the Air Quality API and today, we will share more about the new Solar API!

The beginning of the Solar API

The inception of the Solar API dates back to the launch of Project Sunroof by Google, an initiative aimed at helping individuals estimate their potential solar savings through rooftop installations. As the demand for this valuable information grew, so did the interest of businesses in accessing it. To meet these evolving needs, Google collaborated extensively with solar leaders worldwide to develop the Solar API.

The Solar API offers vital data on over 320 million buildings in 40 countries, aiming to accelerate the transition to clean, renewable solar energy. It caters to solar marketplace websites, installers, SaaS developers, and users seeking rooftop solar insights.

Streamlining photovoltaic sales

Residential solar design and installation processes have traditionally been complex, lengthy, and resource-intensive. Solar companies often find themselves educating property owners, manually measuring rooftops, and developing multiple designs, often lacking complete solar potential data. This exhaustive process typically occurs before finalizing installation contracts.

However, with the introduction of the Solar API, solar businesses can revolutionize their customer experiences. Property owners can now access reliable project proposals without the need for on-site visits, expediting the entire installation process. Each of these improvements contributes to the accelerated deployment of rooftop solar solutions and plays a vital role in reducing carbon emissions.

Key features of the Solar API

Aerial imagery

Create precise installation plans using highly accurate images of your customer’s roofs.


Rooftop analysis

Collect crucial rooftop data, including measurements, elevation, shading, and building outlines.

Solar panel array design

Design solar panel arrays with greater speed and ease, with suggested placements that prioritize the sunniest parts of the roof.


Shading analysis

Access an hourly breakdown of sunlight and shade on a roof, based on year-round weather data.

Solar energy potential

Estimate rooftop solar energy potential and potential cost savings.


Solar and the other APIs in Google’s environment suite play a pivotal role in the company’s commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 1 gigaton annually by 2030. We hope these solutions inspire more people to adopt solar energy and drive progress in the fight against climate change!

Join us by exploring Google’s Solar API webpage and documentation.

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