Two Sandia research reports, “Structural Code Considerations of Solar Rooftop Installations” and “Empirically Derived Strength of Residential Roof Structure for Solar Installations,” have been featured recently in a number of solar trade outlets.
The reports detail rooftop structural analysis conducted by Sandia and funded by the US Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative. Test results indicate that the actual load-bearing capacity for residential rooftop structural systems is several times higher than published values. These outcomes provide a new data for consideration in evaluating rooftops for solar PV installations.
The reports were highlighted in newsletters from the Solar Energy Industries Association, Solar America Board for Codes and Standards (SolarABCs), and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council. The reports were also featured in a June article in Solar Builder magazine, a blog post from DOE’s Office of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency, and webinars with the Solar Instructor Training Network and SolarABCs (and will be in an upcoming edition of the International Code Council’s Building Safety Journal).