Scientists may be trying to recreate the type of power used by the Sun, but there’s another, significantly easier way to harness the energy of our celestial neighbor: Solar energy. Google knows from experience (they do run a search engine after all) that people have questions about solar energy. Some of the main questions include things like: Who can install solar panels near me? How many panels will I need? How much sun does my house get? Am I even in a good position to take advantage of the free energy cascading down from the sky?
To that end, Google today has unveiled Project Sunroof, a tool that will help with all your questions relating to solar energy. This tool will allow you to research prices, determine how much sun your house gets per year, the optimal number of solar panels to get the most energy, and even a tool that will estimate the amount of money you’ll save by switching to solar.
Project Sunroof started as a 20% project for Carl Elkin, and the idea quickly blossomed into something that will hopefully help quite a few people. Elkin commented that he’d often get questions about his solar roof, people thinking his house didn’t get enough sun for solar energy and so on. He turned to aerial mapping data already available through Google Earth to build the tool that would ultimately become Project Sunroof. You can check out a brief overview of the project in the video below.
As the video mentions, the pilot for Project Sunroof is currently only available in Boston – Elkin’s home area, San Francisco – Google’s home area, and Fresno – one of the engineer’s mother’s home area. Pending its success I’d imagine it’s only a matter of time before Project Sunroof is available in a neighborhood near you.
Tell us what you think – Were you thinking about adding solar panels to your home? Would Project Sunroof be helpful to you? Let us know in the comments or on any of your favorite social media sites.Source: Google Green Blog