This morning we reported that Apple had provided some more details to the Cupertino City Council about their proposed plans to build a new “spaceship” campus, including a render that showed a roof entirely tiled in solar panels.
How much power would that generate, though? Enough to power a million Apple TVs.
From today’s plans, we can estimate the roof surface area to be over 750,000 square feet. Assuming (conservatively) 2/3rds of that, or 500,000 square feet of that is utilized for solar, that gives Apple close to a 5MW installation on the amin building alone. On average or as a general “rule of thumb” modern photovoltaics (PV) solar panels will produce up to 10 watts per square foot of solar panel area. Since Cupertino is generally favorable in terms of weather and Apple will obviously use the latest Solar technology developed in the coming years, that could give Apple over 5,000,000 Watts of power to play with. Additionally, Apple has a few other buildings on campus that could be outfitted with solar roofs.
That could make Apple’s new campus the largest solar facility in the world. Either way, it’s a hell of a lot of power to play with, and while it’s not enough to drive all of Apple’s day-to-day operations, it sure is enough to seriously mitigate the company’s already notoriously green-friendly environmental impact. But inquiring minds want to know: is it enough to let the spaceship blast off?