SolarCity Simulator

The SolarCity is a web-based simulator application created to help households, businesses and municipal authorities evaluate their prospects for generating electricity using rooftop-mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) systems.

For homes and businesses, the simulator provides the means to calculate likely savings from rooftop solar PV compared to other power sources and based on a cash flow financing model.

For municipal authorities, the simulator supports assessments of different policy incentives – such as generation or capital subsidies – on each city’s rooftop solar PV market.

The SolarCity simulator combines ultra-high-resolution three-dimensional building footprints with solar irradiation data, computed at one metre (m) grid cells. It is one of a series of web applications developed by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) as part of the Global Atlas for Renewable Energy.

Reach out to IRENA to develop and promote your own SolarCity Simulator.



What is the SolarCity simulator?

Is SolarCity a global solution?

To what extent is shading on rooftops considered in the solar irradiation simulation?

What is the spatial resolution for the simulated solar irradiation and PV module production calculations?

Which solar module was used to estimate the production potential of each different rooftop? Is there an option to compare different panel types?

What is the level of uncertainty in the solar PV performance calculations?

Does the simulator provide seasonal generation profiles?

Does the simulator account for storage capacity?

Does the simulator account for net metering?

What is the source for default investment and operating costs?

How can I request a simulator for my city?

Can IRENA perform a detailed analysis of a city?

Where can I find more details about how the SolarCity simulator works?