Make a data layers request

The dataLayers endpoint provides detailed solar information for a region surrounding a specified location. The endpoint returns 17 downloadable TIFF files, including:

  • Digital surface model (DSM)
  • RGB composite layer (aerial imagery)
  • A mask layer that identifies the boundaries of the analysis
  • Annual solar flux, or the annual yield of a given surface
  • Monthly solar flux, or the monthly yield of a given surface
  • Hourly shade (24 hours)

For more information about how the Solar API defines flux, see Solar API Concepts.

About data layers requests

The following example shows the URL of a REST request to the dataLayers method:

Include your request URL parameters that specify the following:

  • Latitude and longitude coordinates of the location
  • The radius of the region surrounding the location
  • The subset of the data to return (DSM, RGB, mask, annual flux, or monthly flux)
  • The minimum quality allowed in the results
  • The minimum scale of data to return, in meters per pixels

Example data layers request

The following example requests all building insights information in a 100 meter radius for the location at the coordinates of latitude = 37.4450 and longitude = -122.1390:

API key

To make a request to the URL in the response, append your API key to the URL:

curl -X GET ""

You can also make HTTP requests by pasting the URL in the cURL request into your browser's URL bar. Passing the API key provides you with better usage and analytics capabilities and better access control to the response data.

OAuth token

Note: This format is for a testing environment only. For more information, see Use OAuth.

To make a request to the URL in the response, pass in your billing project name and your OAuth token:

curl -H "Authorization: Bearer $(gcloud auth print-access-token)" \
  -H "X-Goog-User-Project: PROJECT_NUMBER_OR_ID" \


To make a request to the URL in the response, include either your API key or the OAuth token in the request. The following example uses an API key:

 * Fetches the data layers information from the Solar API.
 * @param  {LatLng} location      Point of interest as latitude longitude.
 * @param  {number} radiusMeters  Radius of the data layer size in meters.
 * @param  {string} apiKey        Google Cloud API key.
 * @return {Promise<DataLayersResponse>}  Data Layers response.
export async function getDataLayerUrls(
  location: LatLng,
  radiusMeters: number,
  apiKey: string,
): Promise<DataLayersResponse> {
  const args = {
    'location.latitude': location.latitude.toFixed(5),
    'location.longitude': location.longitude.toFixed(5),
    radius_meters: radiusMeters.toString(),
    // The Solar API always returns the highest quality imagery available.
    // By default the API asks for HIGH quality, which means that HIGH quality isn't available,
    // but there is an existing MEDIUM or LOW quality, it won't return anything.
    // Here we ask for *at least* LOW quality, but if there's a higher quality available,
    // the Solar API will return us the highest quality available.
    required_quality: 'LOW',
  console.log('GET dataLayers\n', args);
  const params = new URLSearchParams({ ...args, key: apiKey });
  return fetch(`${params}`).then(
    async (response) => {
      const content = await response.json();
      if (response.status != 200) {
        console.error('getDataLayerUrls\n', content);
        throw content;
      console.log('dataLayersResponse', content);
      return content;

Fields and type of data is a "type" in TypeScript. In this example, we define a custom type to store the fields of interest in the response, such as the pixel values and the lat/long bounding box. You can include more fields as desired.

export interface GeoTiff {
  width: number;
  height: number;
  rasters: Array<number>[];
  bounds: Bounds;

Data type definitions

The following data types are supported:

export interface DataLayersResponse {
  imageryDate: Date;
  imageryProcessedDate: Date;
  dsmUrl: string;
  rgbUrl: string;
  maskUrl: string;
  annualFluxUrl: string;
  monthlyFluxUrl: string;
  hourlyShadeUrls: string[];
  imageryQuality: 'HIGH' | 'MEDIUM' | 'LOW';

export interface Bounds {
  north: number;
  south: number;
  east: number;
  west: number;

export interface BuildingInsightsResponse {
  name: string;
  center: LatLng;
  boundingBox: LatLngBox;
  imageryDate: Date;
  imageryProcessedDate: Date;
  postalCode: string;
  administrativeArea: string;
  statisticalArea: string;
  regionCode: string;
  solarPotential: SolarPotential;
  imageryQuality: 'HIGH' | 'MEDIUM' | 'LOW';

export interface SolarPotential {
  maxArrayPanelsCount: number;
  panelCapacityWatts: number;
  panelHeightMeters: number;
  panelWidthMeters: number;
  panelLifetimeYears: number;
  maxArrayAreaMeters2: number;
  maxSunshineHoursPerYear: number;
  carbonOffsetFactorKgPerMwh: number;
  wholeRoofStats: SizeAndSunshineStats;
  buildingStats: SizeAndSunshineStats;
  roofSegmentStats: RoofSegmentSizeAndSunshineStats[];
  solarPanels: SolarPanel[];
  solarPanelConfigs: SolarPanelConfig[];
  financialAnalyses: object;

export interface SizeAndSunshineStats {
  areaMeters2: number;
  sunshineQuantiles: number[];
  groundAreaMeters2: number;

export interface RoofSegmentSizeAndSunshineStats {
  pitchDegrees: number;
  azimuthDegrees: number;
  stats: SizeAndSunshineStats;
  center: LatLng;
  boundingBox: LatLngBox;
  planeHeightAtCenterMeters: number;

export interface SolarPanel {
  center: LatLng;
  orientation: 'LANDSCAPE' | 'PORTRAIT';
  segmentIndex: number;
  yearlyEnergyDcKwh: number;

export interface SolarPanelConfig {
  panelsCount: number;
  yearlyEnergyDcKwh: number;
  roofSegmentSummaries: RoofSegmentSummary[];

export interface RoofSegmentSummary {
  pitchDegrees: number;
  azimuthDegrees: number;
  panelsCount: number;
  yearlyEnergyDcKwh: number;
  segmentIndex: number;

export interface LatLng {
  latitude: number;
  longitude: number;

export interface LatLngBox {
  sw: LatLng;
  ne: LatLng;

export interface Date {
  year: number;
  month: number;
  day: number;

export interface RequestError {
  error: {
    code: number;
    message: string;
    status: string;

The API returns URLs in the following format:

These URLs can be used to access GeoTIFF files with the requested data.

Example response

The request produces a JSON response in the form:

  "imageryDate": {
    "year": 2022,
    "month": 4,
    "day": 6
  "imageryProcessedDate": {
    "year": 2023,
    "month": 8,
    "day": 4
  "dsmUrl": "",
  "rgbUrl": "",
  "maskUrl": "",
  "annualFluxUrl": "",
  "monthlyFluxUrl": "",
  "hourlyShadeUrls": [
  "imageryQuality": "HIGH"

Access response data

Accessing data via response URLs requires additional authentication. If you use an authentication key, you must append your API key to the URL. If you use OAuth authentication, you must add OAuth headers.

API key

To make a request to the URL in the response, append your API key to the URL:

curl -X GET ""

You can also make HTTP requests by pasting the URL in the cURL request into your browser's URL bar. Passing the API key provides you with better usage and analytics capabilities and better access control to the response data.

OAuth token

To make a request to the URL in the response, pass in your billing project name and your OAuth token:

curl -X GET \
-H 'X-Goog-User-Project: PROJECT_NUMBER_OR_ID' \
-H "Authorization: Bearer $TOKEN" \


The following example shows how to get pixel data values (the information stored in individual pixels of a digital image, including color values and other attributes), calculate the latitude and longitude from the GeoTIFF, and store it in a TypeScript object.

For this specific example, we chose to allow type checking, which reduces type errors, adds reliability to your code, and makes it easier to maintain.

// npm install geotiff geotiff-geokeys-to-proj4 proj4

import * as geotiff from 'geotiff';
import * as geokeysToProj4 from 'geotiff-geokeys-to-proj4';
import proj4 from 'proj4';

 * Downloads the pixel values for a Data Layer URL from the Solar API.
 * @param  {string} url        URL from the Data Layers response.
 * @param  {string} apiKey     Google Cloud API key.
 * @return {Promise<GeoTiff>}  Pixel values with shape and lat/lon bounds.
export async function downloadGeoTIFF(url: string, apiKey: string): Promise<GeoTiff> {
  console.log(`Downloading data layer: ${url}`);

  // Include your Google Cloud API key in the Data Layers URL.
  const solarUrl = url.includes('') ? url + `&key=${apiKey}` : url;
  const response = await fetch(solarUrl);
  if (response.status != 200) {
    const error = await response.json();
    console.error(`downloadGeoTIFF failed: ${url}\n`, error);
    throw error;

  // Get the GeoTIFF rasters, which are the pixel values for each band.
  const arrayBuffer = await response.arrayBuffer();
  const tiff = await geotiff.fromArrayBuffer(arrayBuffer);
  const image = await tiff.getImage();
  const rasters = await image.readRasters();

  // Reproject the bounding box into lat/lon coordinates.
  const geoKeys = image.getGeoKeys();
  const projObj = geokeysToProj4.toProj4(geoKeys);
  const projection = proj4(projObj.proj4, 'WGS84');
  const box = image.getBoundingBox();
  const sw = projection.forward({
    x: box[0] * projObj.coordinatesConversionParameters.x,
    y: box[1] * projObj.coordinatesConversionParameters.y,
  const ne = projection.forward({
    x: box[2] * projObj.coordinatesConversionParameters.x,
    y: box[3] * projObj.coordinatesConversionParameters.y,

  return {
    // Width and height of the data layer image in pixels.
    // Used to know the row and column since Javascript
    // stores the values as flat arrays.
    width: rasters.width,
    height: rasters.height,
    // Each raster reprents the pixel values of each band.
    // We convert them from `geotiff.TypedArray`s into plain
    // Javascript arrays to make them easier to process.
    rasters: [...Array(rasters.length).keys()].map((i) =>
      Array.from(rasters[i] as geotiff.TypedArray),
    // The bounding box as a lat/lon rectangle.
    bounds: {
      north: ne.y,
      south: sw.y,
      east: ne.x,
      west: sw.x,

With the exception of the RGB layer, all TIFF files will display as blank images in image viewer applications. To view downloaded TIFF files, import them into a mapping application software, such as QGIS.

The full specification of this request and response is in the reference documentation.