Section R324 Solar Energy Systems
Portions of roof structures not covered with photovoltaic panel systems shall be designed for dead loads and roof loads in accordance with Sections R301.4 and R301.6. Portions of roof structures covered with photovoltaic panel systems shall be designed for the following load cases:
Roof access, pathways and setback requirements shall be provided in accordance with Sections R324.6.1 through R318.104.22.168. Access and minimum spacing shall be required to provide emergency access to the roof, to provide pathways to specific areas of the roof, provide for smoke ventilation opportunity areas, and to provide emergency egress from the roof.
- Detached, nonhabitable structures, including but not limited to detached garages, parking shade structures, carports, solar trellises and similar structures, shall not be required to provide roof access.
- Roof access, pathways and setbacks need not be provided where the code officialbuilding official has determined that rooftop operations will not be employed.
- These requirements shall not apply to roofs with slopes of two units vertical in 12 units horizontal (17-percent slope) or less.
- For photovoltaic arrays occupying not more than 66 percent of the plan view total roof area, not less than an 18-inch (457 mm) clear setback is required on both sides of a horizontal ridge.
- For photovoltaic arrays occupying more than 66 percent of the plan view total roof area, not less than a 36-inch (914 mm) clear setback is required on both sides of a horizontal ridge.