The UAE has taken the first steps to prepare to bid farewell to the last drop of oil and strike a balance between economic development and maintaining a clean, healthy and safe environment. Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Energy in Dubai, relying on its year-round sunny climate.
The UAE’s hosting of the twenty-eighth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28) next November is an interactive global platform during which the UAE will examine their efforts to transition to the use of renewable energy, particularly solar power, as it plans to leverage renewable resources to meet approximately 50% of its energy needs in 2050.
Solar energy plays a vital role in achieving the objectives of the UAE’s strategy for climate neutrality by 2050, which crowns the country’s efforts and its march to work for the climate locally and globally, over the past three decades, because solar energy will help accelerate the achievement of the strategy’s objectives represented by the diversification of energy sources. incomes, creating opportunities for sustainable economic and social growth, while achieving a balance between sustainable development and reducing the impacts of climate change, building a knowledge economy, leveraging clean technologies to achieving sustainable development and creating a diversified mix of energy sources.
A second source of energy
Solar energy is a second source of electrical energy produced in the UAE. Where the country enjoys sunny weather most days of the year, which has made the sun an ideal alternative for providing renewable and sustainable energy that achieves a zero greenhouse gas emission strategy, at a competitive cost.
The latest report released by the International Renewable Energy Agency indicates that solar energy offers a lower cost option compared to all other new fossil fuel based electricity generation solutions, while solar photovoltaic solutions have delivered the greatest cost savings in the past decade.
The UAE has launched ambitious initiatives to increase dependence on solar energy, while continuing to build renewable and clean energy projects, including the Shams Abu Dhabi project and the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum solar energy complex in Dubai, which will have a generating capacity of 5,000 megawatts by 2030.
The largest solar power plant in the world
The United Arab Emirates is constructing the Al Dhafra Solar Photovoltaic Power Plant in Abu Dhabi, which is the world’s largest independent power plant to generate electricity from solar energy at a single site, with a capacity of up to at 2 gigawatts of electricity.
The plant will support the diversification of renewable energy sources in Abu Dhabi, increase the total capacity of the emirate and reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
The station aims to reduce the emirate’s carbon emissions by more than 2.4 million metric tons a year, equivalent to taking around 470,000 cars off the road and providing electricity to more than 160,000 households in the United Arab Emirates.
The largest concentrated solar power plant
The fourth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum solar energy complex, which is being implemented by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority with a capacity of 950 megawatts according to the independent product system, is the largest single-site concentrated solar power plant in the world that combines concentrated solar power and photovoltaic solar power technologies.
The fourth phase includes 700 megawatts of concentrated solar power and 250 megawatts of photovoltaic solar panels. Where this phase uses a system of parabolic reflectors with a total capacity of 600 megawatts (3 units with a capacity of 200 megawatts each), and the tallest solar tower in the world with a height of 262.44 meters from a capacity of 100 megawatts (with molten salt technology), and when completed, the fourth phase will be the world’s largest solar energy storage project for 15 hours, enabling 24-hour energy availability. So far, 300 megawatts of concentrated solar power have been harnessed in the fourth phase (100 megawatts from the solar tower and 200 megawatts from the parabolic reflector system), in addition to 217 megawatts of photovoltaic solar panel technology, becoming largest concentrated solar power plant in operation in the world.
The Shams power plant, located in the Al Dhafra region in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, is one of the largest operating concentrated solar power plants in the world with a capacity of 100 megawatts in North Africa.
The station is located about 120 km southwest of Abu Dhabi and 6 km from Madinat Zayed. This site was chosen because it offers enough space for the station, a high level of direct solar radiation, as well as easy connection to the existing power grid infrastructure.
The choice of site is also in line with the economic development objectives of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, which include stimulating economic activity in the Al Dhafra region.
The plant, which was established in 2013, helps support the UAE’s efforts to diversify its energy mix and reduce its carbon footprint by avoiding the release of approximately 175,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, equivalent plant 1.5 million trees or retire 15,000 cars. Abu Dhabi roads. Since its inception, Shams has contributed to the UAE’s goal of generating 27% of its electricity from clean energy sources by 2021, and will contribute 50% by 2050.
The station, which covers an area of 2.5 square kilometers, uses more than 768 parabolic inverters to provide sustainable, inexpensive and safe electricity.
Shams is a concentrated solar power plant that generates electricity using the heat of the sun. The station uses reflective parabolic troughs, where rows of mirrors capture heat from the sun and convert it into electrical energy through an advanced steam turbine.
The steam, heated in the superheaters, is pumped to power a turbine which drives a 15 kV generator generating 100 MW of net electricity, enough to power 20,000 homes.
The “Shams” plant contributes to diversifying energy sources in the United Arab Emirates and reducing the country’s carbon footprint.
Largest single-site solar power generation project
The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Power Complex, which is being implemented by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, is the largest single-site solar power generation project in the world, according to the Independent Producer System , and its production capacity will reach 5,000 megawatts by 2030, with a total investment of 50 billion dirhams.
When completed, the complex will help reduce more than 6.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions per year. The capacity of the solar power projects that have been operated in the complex is 2,327 megawatts with solar panel technology, photovoltaic and concentrated solar power.
Clean energy generation capacity in Dubai’s power mix is around 15.7% and is expected to reach 25% by the end of 2030.
The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Energy Complex contributes to the goals of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 and the Dubai Carbon Neutral Strategy to provide 100% of power generation capacity to from clean energy sources by 2050.
The first phase of the project started with a capacity of 13 megawatts (with photovoltaic solar panel technology) in October 2013, and the second phase with a capacity of 200 megawatts (with photovoltaic solar panel technology) was put into service in March 2017, while the third phase was operated with a capacity of 800 megawatts (with photovoltaic solar panel technology) In November 2020, the fourth phase will have a capacity of 950 megawatts (700 megawatts of concentrated solar technology + 250 megawatts of photovoltaic solar panels). 517 megawatts of the phase have been operated and work is underway to complete the rest of the projects.
As for the fifth phase, it will have a capacity of 900 megawatts (with photovoltaic solar panel technology), and 800 megawatts of this phase have been exploited, and work is underway to complete the rest of the projects. While the sixth phase will have a capacity of 1,800 megawatts (with photovoltaic solar panel technology) and will be operated in phases.
The largest independent solar power plant
Noor Abu Dhabi Power Plant, the largest independent solar power plant in the world, started commercial operations in April 2019. It is located in Sweihan, Abu Dhabi, covering an area of 8 square kilometers, and comprises 3.2 million energy solar. panels. It produces approximately 1.2 gigawatts of electricity, reducing dependence on natural gas and helping to reduce the carbon footprint by 1 million metric tons per year.
Noor Abu Dhabi is the first vital EWEC project using sustainable technology, and it is a major step in the transformation of the energy sector. Besides the size of the plant, this project broke another record during the tender in September 2016 in terms of obtaining the most competitive tariff in the world, amounting to 8.888 fils/kWh.
The Abu Dhabi National Power Company (TAQA) owns 60% of the project, while the consortium of Marubeni Corporation and Jinko Power owns the rest of the project share of 20% each.
The project has won numerous awards during its development phase, in addition to being awarded Power Generation Project of the Year at the MEED Projects Awards 2020 and Project of the Year at the Middle East Solar Awards 2020, organized by the Middle East Solar Industry Association ( MESIA). ).
The first hydroelectric power station in the Persian Gulf region
The stored water energy technology hydropower plant, implemented by DEWA in the Hatta region of Dubai, is the first of its kind in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. The plant’s generating capacity will reach 250 megawatts , with a storage capacity of 1,500 megawatt hours, with a lifespan of up to 80 years. The project investments amount to one billion and 421 million dirhams, and the project is expected to be completed in the last quarter of 2024.
The hydroelectric plant will depend on generating electricity from water stored in the Hatta Dam and another upper dam built in the mountainous region. Advanced turbines based on clean energy produced at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Energy Complex will work in reverse to pump water from the Hatta Dam to the Upper Dam.The Upper Dam is connected to the Hatta Dam, by a 1.2 underground water channel Electricity generation and storage cycle efficiency will reach 78.9%, with immediate response to power demand within 90 seconds.
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