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Wednesday Jun 15

Dubai has announced plans for what will be the world’s largest solar plant.



The Dubai Water and Electricity Authority (DEWA) have announced the launch of the world’s largest concentrated solar power project that would generate a staggering 1,000 megawatts and by 2030, 5,000 megawatts to provide power for 800,000 homes. Dubai’s solar park will aid in the reduction of 6.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions every year.

This is nearly double the capacity of the current largest solar plant in Morocco - the Noor Quarazazate complex which will only reach a 580 megawatt capacity by 2018. Dubai is set to meet 25% of the city’s national energy requirements and beat America’s renewable energy generation.

The new solar plant is part of Dubai’s Clean Energy Strategy, which is estimated to generate 75% of its total power from clean energy by 2050. Private companies will be enlisted to build and operate the plant, which is located in the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. According to reports, this park is the biggest single-site to generate electricity from solar energy worldwide.

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, DEWA managing director, said that the project is called a “concentrated solar plant” as it consists of a large amount of heliostats that follow the sun’s direction and uses the sunlight to melt salt.

“The molten salt stores energy and can be used to power a steam turbine, allowing for energy production even when the sun isn’t shining.”

“The plant will have several thousand heliostats located around a tower that receives the radiation reflected by the heliostats which follow the sun’s movement. The heat-transfer fluid is then used to power the steam turbine to generate electricity.”

This seems the perfect option for a location that is very hot and receives a lot of sunlight, similar to the way that 40% of Denmark’s energy output comes from wind. Furthermore, Portugal recently sustained all it’s energy needs for a total of 100 hours consecutively, through solar, wind and hydro power and Germany lasted a day with renewable energy.

The DEWA facility will contribute to making Dubai the city with the lowest carbon footprint in the world by 2050. Furthermore, the plant will feature a solar-powered water pumping and desalination station that has a production capacity of 50 cubic meters of water a day. The significance of renewable energy to achieve a balance between development and sustainability is very much a part of DEWA’s vision, to “consolidate sustainability to ensure a brighter and happier future.”

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