Community Solar Tool


Community solar programs hold great potential for providing renewable energy at affordable rates to individuals who might not otherwise be able to own a solar system: residents and businesses buy a share of a collectively owned system and receive payments for the electricity generated by the system. But creating a community solar program requires specialized business, legal, and technical knowledge that can present new barriers for implementation. The University of Oregon developed an innovative decision support system to meet this need.

The online Community Solar Tool (CST) at helps organizations identify the most effective business model for their community solar project and find detailed information and tools needed move from start up to operations in a manner that industry players say has never been done before. The new tool is currently populated with Oregon specific data, such as power rates, utility incentives, and average legal fees.

CST was developed by researchers from the University of Oregon's Institute for a Sustainable Environment, Computer & Information Sciences and the Solar Radiation Monitoring Lab.

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Chuck Williams
University of Oregon
Robert Ribe
Michael Hennessey
Michael Cherba
Sarah Mazze
Steve Adams
Bob Doppelt