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Abstract

In the context of encouraging the development of renewable energy, this paper deals with the description of a software solution for mapping out solar potential in a large scale and in high resolution. We leverage the performance provided by Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) to accelerate shadow casting procedures (used both for direct sunlight exposure and the sky view factor), as well as use off-the-shelf components to compute an average weather pattern for a given area. Application of the approach is presented in the context of the solar cadaster of Greater Geneva (2000 km2). The results show that doing the analysis on a square tile of 3.4 km at a resolution of 0.5 m takes up to two hours, which is better than what we were achieving with the previous work. This shows that GPU-based calculations are highly competitive in the field of solar potential modeling.

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