Project Site Requirements
Site visits must be thorough enough to provide accurate information needed to
complete the design and properly plan and deliver the PV installation. Anything
less will result in extra trips, added time, improper equipment choices, installa-
tion delays, less profit, or even—worst-case scenario—losing the project. The
information collected during the site survey is used to prepare the cost estimate as
well. A good on-site surveyor has the following tools on hand:
Site plan of the building to determine orientation (direction north,
south, east, and west)
All available construction drawings of the building
Photographs of the roof and electrical meter location
Checklists and forms for recording the building survey
Tape measure
Shading analyzer
When you complete this chapter, you will be able to:
Survey a project site.
Explain how microclimate, shading, and solar window affect PV design and
Describe the importance of module orientation and tilt angles.
List various shade analysis tools.
Assess electrical demand and electrical loads.
Understand roof construction and materials.
Determine the effect of roof construction and materials on system
installation strategies.
Describe mounting options.

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