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Solar Pathfinder

Solar Pathfinder

The Solar Pathfinder is the only instrument on the market that can give an entire year's solar potential for a given site in one five-minute sitting. This non-electronic instrument is ready to use right when you receive it.

The Solar Pathfinder uses a highly polished, transparent, convex plastic dome to give a panoramic view of the entire site. All the trees, buildings or other obstacles to the sun are plainly visible as reflections on the surface of the dome. The sunpath diagram can be seen through the transparent dome at the same time. This diagram is latitude specific and shows the sun's average path for each month. The rays of the diagram depict solar time. The diagram itself is therefore calibrated to give solar insolation data for all the hours of the day and all the days of the year.

The Solar Pathfinder is actually very easy to use but somewhat difficult to explain its use here. More detailed instructions on its use can be found here.

The Solar Pathfinder is available with or without a tripod to set it on. I highly recommend the tripod as it makes it much easier to use and doesn't cost a whole lot more.

I have used the Solar Pathfinder and it is a very useful tool, and is very easy to use. It clearly shows any objects that may be blocking the sun from your site during any time of the year. This is very valuable information because even a small tree branch shading a module can greatly decrease the power output of your array. If you know your installation site before you install your array you can be sure you're getting all the power you can.

The solar pathfinder comes with everything you need to use it and comes with a hard case to protect it during travel and storage.

My Overall Rating 8\10

MSRP $255 with tripod
MSRP $215 no tripod


Comments on "Solar Pathfinder"

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Gary (gary AT gary DOT com)   01/28/2007

It is a fine tool, but if you are only going to do one solar site survey and the price seems steep, there is a simple procedure you can go through here:
that gives the same result in an easy half an hour.

farrand page (info AT info DOT com)   08/21/2007

I am looking for the sun pathfinder that has a camera rather than a tri-pot

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