Existing Solar PV Resources

Tools, apps, and software

  • System Advisor Model (SAM)
    A performance and financial free software designed to facilitate decision making for people involved in the renewable energy industry.
  • Hybrid2
    This software package is a user friendly tool to perform detailed long term performance and economic analysis on a wide variety of hybrid power systems.
  • PVWatts Calculator
    Estimates the energy production and cost of energy of grid-connected PV energy systems throughout the world. It allows homeowners, small building owners, installers and manufacturers to easily develop estimates of the performance of potential PV installations.
  • Renewable Energy Ready Home Solar Site Assessment Tool
    This tool is intended to guide homebuilders in evaluating a proposed site’s solar resource potential.
  • RETScreen
    RETScreen is a Clean Energy Management Software system for energy efficiency, renewable energy and co-generation project feasibility analysis as well as ongoing energy performance analysis.
  • HOMER Legacy: The Original
    HOMER Legacy is a free computer model that simplifies the task of evaluating design options for both off-grid and grid-connected power systems for remote, stand-alone, and distributed generation (DG) applications.
  • Skelion
    Skelion is a SketchUp plugin that allows design solar thermal or solar photovoltaic installations starting from a 3d model.
  • EasySolar
    EasySolar is a cloud-based web platform and mobile app for creating PV designs.
  • Polysun Online
    Easily plan and calculate PV installations in a few steps. Basic simulation is free; optional features can be purchased.
  • SolarDesignTool
    This software, available online, allows users to create PV system designs and accurate panel layouts.
    Generate customer design options in minutes complete with PDF system datasheet and including data from electrical specifications to array layout diagrams.
  • Solargis pvPlanner
    Simulation tool for planning and optimization of photovoltaic systems using climate and geographic data at high temporal and spatial resolution and new generation high performance algorithms.
  • Solarmodel
    Solarmodel is an internet platform for designing solar PV installation and for evaluating investment in photovoltaic systems.
  • i-Pals WEB
    i-Pals WEB is PV simulation software which includes multiple functions as following: designing layout, designing strings, making estimation, simulating power generation and shadow deterioration, comparing different projects.
  • Solaripedia
    Tools for solar architecture and green building. Many of these tools are free online. If not, the tool is listed as “fee-based.” These tools can help you design and build sustainably.

Educational materials

Renewable energy association websites