Application of GIS tools to the Improvement of Energy Supply in PV Rooftop Installations

Open Access

Year : 2023 | Volume :12 | Issue : 1 | Page : 1-13

    Segura-Muñoz F.J

  1. Armenta-Déu C

  2. Domínguez-Bravo F.J

  1. Ph.D. (in progress), Dpt. of Matter Strcuture, Thermal Physycs and Electronics. Faculty of Physical Sciences. Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain
  2. Professor, Dpt. of Matter Strcuture, Thermal Physycs and Electronics. Faculty of Physical Sciences. Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain
  3. Researcher, Dpt. of Renewable Energies. Centre for Energy, Environmental and Technological Research. Avda. Complutense 40, 28040 Madrid, Madrid, Spain


Present work studies the energy supply from photovoltaic (PV) installations in industrial conglomerates using the rooftops as a surface to install the PV panels. The study is based on a modelling procedure that takes into account the specific characteristics of the rooftop, shape, size, azimuth and inclination, using GIS tools to identify these parameters for every single rooftop. Modelling has been developed modifying the tilt angle of the PV panel for vertical and horizontal PV panel layout and analyzing which one of the two configurations generates more energy. The study has been extended for tilt angles from the horizontal plane to the latitude of the location. The methodology uses a previous study in determining the optimum number of PV panels that can be placed on the rooftop. Shading effects have been taken into account for energy supply calculation, resulting in a variation with the tilt angle of the PV panel that depends on the range of the tilt angle; three ranges have been identified, low (0≤β/ϕ≤0.3), medium (0.3≤β/ϕ≤0.8)and high (0.8≤β/ϕ≤1). Maximum variation, 1.6%, has been observed in the low range, while for the high range energy supply does not seem there is no blocking to depend on the tilt angle. The results show that the modelling matches theoretical predictions within accuracy higher than 99.4%. Modelling has also been developed for two different configurations of the PV panel positioning, vertical and horizontal. Tests have been applied to the largest and smallest rooftop; the similar trend in the evolution and the close values of the energy supply with tilt angle proves that the methodology can be applied to any of the industrial building rooftops. The results of the modelling show that there is no much difference between the two configurations; however, horizontal configuration works better for larger areas while vertical one is more suitable for smaller areas. Additional row has been added to the layout provided the shadow is out of rooftop bounds. The increase of the energy is not very relevant, barely 1% for the vertical configuration and 0.2% for the horizontal one.

Keywords: GIS tools, photovoltaic installations, PV panels, rooftop, shading effects

[This article belongs to Journal of Remote Sensing & GIS(jorsg)]

How to cite this article: Segura-Muñoz F.J, Armenta-Déu C, Domínguez-Bravo F.J , Application of GIS tools to the Improvement of Energy Supply in PV Rooftop Installations jorsg 2023; 12:1-13
How to cite this URL: Segura-Muñoz F.J, Armenta-Déu C, Domínguez-Bravo F.J , Application of GIS tools to the Improvement of Energy Supply in PV Rooftop Installations jorsg 2023 {cited 2023 Apr 03};12:1-13. Available from:

Full Text PDF Download

Browse Figures


1. International Energy Agency. 2019. Energy Statistics of OCDE and non-OCDE country balance. [online] Available from: end=2014&locations=MX&start=1960&view=chart.
2. Christian Breyer, Otto Koskinen and Philipp Blechinger. Profitable climate change mitigation: The case of greenhouse gas emission reduction benefits enabled by solar photovoltaic systems. Renewable and sustainable Energy Reviews: 2015; 49:610-628.
3. SPE.(2017). Global Market Outlook for Solar Power 2016-2020. Solar Power Europe.
4. SPE.(2015). Global Market Outlook for Solar Power 2015-2019. Solar Power Europe.
5. EPIA.(2014). Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics 2014-2018. European Photovoltaic Industry Association.
6. EIA.(2015). Snapshot on Global PV 1992-2014. US Energy Information Administration.
7. EIA.(2015). Snapshot on Global PV 1992-2015. US Energy Information Administration. A_Snapshot_of_Global_PV_-_1992-2015_-_Final_2_02.pdf.
8. EIA.(2017). Snapshot on Global PV Markets 2016. US Energy Information Administration. _1992-2016 1_.pdf.
9. EIA.(2020). Electricity in the USA. US Energy Information Administration.
10. EIA.(2020). Electricity mix in the European Union, Q1 2020. U.S. Energy Information Administration. union-q1-2020.
11. Mohammad Javanbakht, Ali Darvishi Boloorani, Majid Kiavarz et al. Spatial-temporal analysis of urban environmental quality of Tehran, Iran. Ecological Indicators: 2021;120: 106901.
12. Jinqing Peng and Lin Lu. Investigation on the development potential of rooftop PV system in Hong Kong and its environmental benefits. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews: 2013; 27:149-162.
13. Christopher Jones and Paul Gilbert. Determining the consequential life cycle greenhouse gas emissions of increased rooftop photovoltaic deployment. Journal of Cleaner Production: 2018; 184: 211-219.
14. EIA.(2009). The impact of increasing home size on energy demand. U.S. Energy Information Administration.
15. Qing Zhong and Daoqin Tong. Spatial layout optimization for solar photovoltaic (PV) panel installation. Renewable Energy: 2020;150: 1-11.
16. Adam Hinge, Paolo Bertoldi and Paul Waide. Comparing Commercial Building Energy Use Around the World. IEA, EU Commission DG JRC, Proceedings: 2004; 4: 136-147.
17. Yibo Chen, Hongwei Tan, Simeng Li and Xiaodong Song. GIS-based Dimensionless Assessment of Distributed Rooftop PV in Chinese Residential Communities. Procedia Engineering: 2017; 205: 205-212.
18. Osama Bany Mousa, Robert A. Taylor and Ali Shirazi. Multi-objective optimization of solar photovoltaic and solar thermal collectors for industrial rooftop applications. Energy Conversion and Management: 2019;195:392-408.
19. Sagar G. Randive and T.Z. Quazi. Review Paper On Energy Consumption in Industrial Sector. International Journal of Scientific & Engineering Research: 2017; 8(3):254-258.
20. Jannik Heusinger, Ashley M. Broadbent, et al. Adaptation of photovoltaic energy balance model for rooftop applications. Building and Environment: 2021; 192: 107628.
21. WaqasAhmed, Jamil Ahmed Sheikh, Salman Ahmad, Shahjadi Hisan Farjana and M.A. Parvez Mahmud. Impact of PV system orientation angle accuracy on greenhouse gases mitigation, Case Studies in Thermal Engineering: 2021; 23:1-10.
22. Taehoon Hong, Choongwan Koo, Joonho Park et al. A GIS (geographic information system)- based optimization model for estimating the electricity generation of the rooftop PV (photovoltaic) system. Energy: 2014;65: 190-199.
23. Segura-Muñoz, F.J., Armenta-Déu, C. and Domínguez-Bravo, F.J. (2021) Rooftop layout optimization for PV installation using GIS, Journal of Remote Sensing and GIS (under review).
24. 2021, February. WGS 84 / UTM zone 14N – EPSG:32614. [Online]. Available from:
25. ArcGIS. 2017, May. Tittle. [online] Available from:
26. G. I. Northern et al. 2015, January. NASA Surface Meteorology and Solar Energy. [online] Available from: https://eosweb. larc. nasa. gov/cgibin/sse/grid. cgi.,2015.
27. P. D. Paul W. Stackhouse, Jr. NASA Surface meteorology and Solar Energy. 2016.
28. Q. Hernández-Escobedo, A. Fernández-García, and F. Manzano-Agugliaro. Solar resource assessment for rural electrification and industrial development in the Yucatan Peninsula (Mexico). Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews: 2014;76: 1550–1561.
29. E. Lorenzo. Electricidad Solar Fotovoltaica. Ingeniería fotovoltaica. 3 Edition. Progensa: Sevilla: 2014.
30. Germán Santamaría-Herranz and Agustín Castejón-Oliva. Instalaciones Solares Fotovoltaicas. Ed. Editex. Madrid. 2012.
31. O. Perpiñán Lamigueiro, Energía Solar Fotovoltaica. 2011th ed., vol. 2. Creative Commons España: Spain: 2007.
32. 2021, February. The Python Language Reference — Python 3.9.2 documentation. [online] Available from:

Regular Issue Open Access Article
Volume 12
Issue 1
Received March 17, 2020
Accepted April 3, 2021
Published April 3, 2023