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SOLAR NYC. Sean C. Ahearn CARSI Hunter College – CUNY NGAC Meeting, September 23, 2010. CARSI, 2010 -- preliminary LIDAR data. Collaborations. SOLAR NYC: The Players.

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solar nyc

Sean C. Ahearn

CARSI Hunter College – CUNY

NGAC Meeting, September 23, 2010

CARSI, 2010 -- preliminary LIDAR data


SOLAR NYC: The Players

These are the four project partners that are working on the SOLAR NYC Project. These partners have signed an MOU outlining specific roles and responsibilities.

Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability

Sustainable CUNY on behalf of the City University of New York

Hunter College - CUNY

NYC Solar America Cities Advisory Board

  • Eight industry representatives
  • Ten non-profit solar/energy advocacy organizations
  • Six additional government agencies

We work with these City agencies on various solar initiatives. They provide expertise on how to integrate solar into their processes and programs.

Our utility and state partners. These groups provide financial and advisory support.


cuny players
CUNY Players


Sean C. Ahearn

Yo Jin Ahn

Jake Garcia

Gordon Green

Ylli Kellici

Sustainable CUNY

Tria Case

Alison Klein

Noah Ginsburg

lidar as input to solar insolation model
LiDAR as input to Solar Insolation Model

Create surface model for City

Testing of resolution

1 foot

Use LIDAR to examine roof morphology

Useable roof area

Use ESRI insolation tool

Calibrate with installation data

LiDAR Coverage for New York City

(1119 Tiles, > 15 billion points)

LiDAR Points Overlaid with Orthophoto and Signal Intensity

View from North-East: Columbus Circle, Central Park South-West Manhattan, New York City

quality assurance of lidar
Quality Assurance of LiDAR
  • Minimum density of 8 points per m2 (QL 1)
  • Accuracy 9-10 cm RMSE Raw LAS format 1.2 including X, Y, Z and Intensity information
  • DSM
  • Bare Earth
  • Classification (ASPRS)
    • 1 Unclassified
    • 2 Bare Earth
    • 7 Noise
    • 12 Overlap
ground control for qa 2cm rmse
Ground Control for QA (2cm RMSE)
  • Manhattan: 198 points
  • Queens: 260 points
  • Brooklyn: 450 points
  • Bronx: 290 points
  • SI: 190
ground control for manhattan
Ground Control for Manhattan

Density of 0.74 = 8 pts per m2

  • LiDAR and 196 Ground Control Points
  • Average Difference = -1.64 cm (error in the Z of the airplane derived from airborne RTK GPS?)
  • RMSE = 6.69 cm
LiDAR Data Quality Check Points
  • Check ground survey points
  • placed non-ground

1. Artifacts or Outliers by Profile Analysis

QA 3 : Check Classification

Bare Earth only

Bare Earth and Unclassified

Using just bare earth, an error of 4 feet was found due to misclassification

Application Example 1: Building Extraction

Digital Surface Model

Digital Elevation Model (1ft)

Building Extraction