Open solar energy data
Open energy data is one of the European Data Portal’s (EDP) most popular data domains due to its impact on the energy sector, for example. Within this data category, the EDP has a fair amount of open solar energy data.
Solar energy is light and heat from the sun that can be harnessed and used for technologies such as solar heating, photovoltaics, solar thermal energy, solar architecture, and artificial photosynthesis. Due to these technologies, solar energy has become an increasingly popular renewable energy source to replace fossil fuel. With this increase, more datasets about solar energy are being published as open data by government bodies and institutions across Europe and beyond.
Open solar energy datasets
At the time of publication, the EDP offers over 21,000 datasets related to solar energy. For example:
- ‘Renewable Energy Atlas for Flanders’ from the Belgian national open data portal. This dataset is part of the Renewable Energy Atlas Vlaanderen and includes open solar energy data from the Flanders region in Belgium, such as the number of households per municipality currently lacking a solar water heater and their foreseeable heat demand for sanitary hot water.
- ‘Solar photovoltaic installations on the ground in Sarthe’ from the French national open data portal. This dataset contains data on the ground solar power plant granted, modified, refused, cancelled or abandoned in the French department Sarthe.
- ‘Solar heat; Number of instillations, collector surface and heat production’ from the Dutch national open data portal. As the name suggests, this dataset contains data on solar heat, the number of installations, the collector surface and the heat production across the Netherlands. This data started being collected in 1990.
Open solar energy data use cases
In the EDP library of open data use cases, there are several examples of open solar data (re-)use. For example, the Sun Energia and Greenhome.
Sun Energia is a Finnish service that uses energy data, including data on solar energy production, open meteorological data and weather data, to analyse energy production and potential savings for buildings and homes. By assessing the solar energy production of buildings and homes, Sun Energia advises clients on how many solar panels they will need on their roof to save energy and money.
GreenHome is a Dutch service that offers independent advice on how to create a more sustainable home through energy data, including data on the cost of solar panels and heating. Through the service, users can gain custom information on how they can stop using fossil fuel and become more energy neutral.
AI, Journalism and Solar Farms
To further explore the topic of open solar energy data, the European Data Portal and Support Centre for Data Sharing (SCDS) team will host a Data Talks session on “AI and Journalism” on 19 August 2020 at 13:00 CEST. In this session, we will be joined by:
- Mathias Felipe de Lima Santos from the University of Navarra; and
- Florencia Coelho from La Nacion.
In this session, they will be discussing their work on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Nature and how La Nacio used AI and open satellite imagery to map the status of solar farms across Argentina.
For more examples of open data, explore the EDP’s datasets and use cases from different European countries that exemplify the value of open data and aim to address the current challenges in energy. If you know of any open solar energy data use cases, share them with us via mail, and follow us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to stay up to date!