August 22, 2021
Drone / Eco Tech


7 years. 103 days. That's how much time we have until climate change becomes irreversible, but one start-up is helping accelerate our shift to solar. Born out of New York University (NYU), Scanifly optimizes the placement of solar panels on roofs to maximize sunlight by using drones and computer imaging. Let’s take a birds-eye view of them.

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⚾ The Elevator Pitch:

Did you know we harness less than 0.004% of solar energy that hits the surface of earth? The transition to solar presents clear challenges: Coughing up money for solar consultations, safely installing panels, and knowing where to place panels for maximum sunshine.

Enter Scanifly. Scanifly uses drones, 3D modeling, and artificial intelligence in one streamlined process to determine where to install panels. First, they fly drones over rooftops. Then, they use the drone footage to create 3D computer models to analyze the angle at which sunlight hits rooftops. Finally, their model optimizes which parts of the roof are best to install the panels.

Their technology is versatile enough to adapt to any type of roof - whether it be a house, canopy, carport, apartment, ground mount, school, or more. Their ultimate goal is to be the go-to partner for solar panel agencies.

👇 The Drop Down

  • Site:
  • Founded: 2015
  • Stage: Accelerator / Incubator
  • Tech trend: Drones / Eco-Tech
  • Traction: Team has gone through two accelerators (NYU Future Labs, Clean Tech Open), has international business deals, very fleshed out multi-faceted product
  • Team - Ex-Solar Operators who identified a pain point in their line of work Jason Steinberg - Founder & CEO, (ex-Solar Contractor)
    John Novak - Founder & CPO, (ex-Solar Systems Designer)
    Denis Kobozev - Founder & CTO (ex-3D software expert)

🔍 Why we like it

  1. 🥾 They’ve climbed roofs in their customers’ boots.
    Not many founders will fight their fear of heights and climb atop roofs to understand the problem space. Scanifly’s founders have lived & breathed the line of work that they are revolutionizing. Their founding team, a solar contractor, designer, and 3D software expert. This equips their team to optimize all parts of the solar process, from climbing up tall roofs, creating estimates for clients, hiring contractors, analyzing sunlight angles for optimal solar intake, 3D modeling, and more.
  2. 📈 Their solution is a crazy improvement to an untouched process.
    Scanifly’s deep understanding of the space has resulted in a product that can autonomously complete 99% of solar agency requirements. They can generate high-resolution aerial footage, estimate total photovoltaic capacity, identify optimal configurations, and more. What once took days with a tape measure is now done in 15 minutes of drone flying. This alignment has resulted in INSANE organic growth across the US and international markets.
  3. ⚡️ This market is surging with energy!
    How crazy is it that 0.004% of available energy already powers 2% of our world’s energy consumption? Historically, solar energy growth has been limited by price, but with bleeding-edge research and powerhouses like Tesla increasing economies of scale, solar energy prices have dropped to rival traditional fuel sources. There’s a wave of homes, companies, and cities transitioning to solar & Scanilfy will be surfing it.

🎤 Founders Corner

🤝 Get involved with Scanifly