Solar Smart LLC is an originator, developer and syndicates the sale of ground-mounted solar projects ranging in size from 500 kW to 10 MW. Based in North Charleston, SC the two-year-old company uses its intellectual property, and advanced technology to reduce the development cost of community solar projects by offering a better value proposition and the ability to service a much larger market.

Through the use of their proprietary technology and processes, Solar Smart originates, develops and syndicates the sale of commercial solar projects to leading Fortune 250 companies including; publicly traded companies, Regional Utilities, National solar developers/EPCs and investors.

The company was established in 2014 and is has its head office located in North Charleston, SC.

Solar Smart LLC is currently developing 30+ MW of projects in Massachusetts with a cumulative project value to investors of $82,500,000 (based on a market sell price of $2.75 per Watt) and effective November 1, 2015 the company expanded into the New York and Maryland Community solar markets.

Patent, Technology and Process

Solar Smart LLC filed a United States Patent Application on Augusts 8, 2015 that relates to the field of systems and methods for site selection of ground sites that provide the greatest opportunity for success in the construction of a photovoltaic (PV) power system. The patent specification relates to novel systems and methods for identifying potential PV system sites that have a high probability in passing utility interconnection requirements and gaining local, state and federal entitlement/permitting approvals for the construction and maximization of PV production in residential and commercial ground mounted photovoltaic power generating systems.

The mission of the system is to define methods for identifying land for ground mounted photovoltaic sites with reduced effort, cost and minimized risk.  Two main objectives were targeted:

  • Eliminate as many parcels as possible systematically with available data.
  • Provide a system that would show needed information to make a determination on whether the remaining parcels may be a viable option for solar development.

These methods use publicly available data sets and a desktop GIS to collect, normalize and create spatial layers used to select parcels by continually eliminating encumbering areas.  The encumbrances may be simply downloaded spatial data or created spatial data which is the result of adding positive space (added area on the outside of an existing line/polygon) or negative space (added area on the inside of an existing polygon) analysis value layers. After the encumbering areas are subtracted from the original parcel, those parcels or parts of parcels may be calculated for size and queried to determine if the area (parcels or parts of parcels) that remain will support a commercial ground mount PV system.

The parcels that do remain may be considered “target” properties that offer a high likelihood of being used for the construction of future commercial ground mounted solar systems, being built at a lower cost (i.e. reduced projects soft cost to the developer/investor) and reduce the time  between start and finish of potential PV systems.