Significant progress has been made in the Dubai 700 MW concentrated solar power project, announced as the world’s largest single-site CSP project. On Jan 9th, a topping-out ceremony for the project’s 222-meter central tower was held, welcoming representatives from Shanghai Electric – the project’s general contractor – Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), Noor Energy 1 and China Construction Third Engineering Bureau.
“SEGC (Shanghai Electric Group Company) showed us their outstanding performance, finishing the concrete solar tower according to schedule, even if they suffered tough challenges along the way,” said Enrique Valades Nieto, Noor Energy 1 Construction Manager.
The 700 MW CSP project marks phase four of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai and is a crucial part of the UAE government’s “Vision 2021” initiative to ensure sustainable and environmentally friendly development.
In addition to “Vision 2021”, the government also launched the “Energy Strategy 2050 Plan”, which aims to increase the contribution of clean energy in the total energy mix from 25 per cent to 50 per cent by 2050. Once operational, the CSP plant will reduce Dubai’s carbon footprint by 1.6 million tons per year.
Sustainability is the focus of the project. Shanghai Electric engaged experts and partners to relocate wild animals and 180 mesquite trees across the 40 sq km site to a new wildlife park to minimize the impact of construction.
The project also aims to generate jobs for residents and is supported by an international team. It is estimated that as the project progresses, it will create around 6000 jobs in the technology, energy management and construction sectors.
Concentrated solar power systems generate solar power by using mirrors or lenses to concentrate a large area of sunlight onto a small area. Electricity is generated when the focused light is converted into heat, which drives a steam turbine connected to an electrical power generator. The solar power collectors of the 700 MW CSP plant include both tower and tube collectors. The central tower is the crucial component of the plant and is used for receiving all the focused sunlight from the 70,000 mirrors to increase the temperature to more than 500 ºC, and with this heat produce the steam turbine connected to the electrical power generator. With a total height of 267 meters, it is currently the world’s highest thermal tower.
Shanghai Electric Group Company Limited (SEHK:2727, SSE:601727) is principally engaged in design, manufacture and distribution of electric power and industrial equipment. Its primary focus is on new energy, including the manufacture and sale of wind turbines and components and nuclear power equipment; efficient and clean energy business, including the manufacture and sale of thermal power equipment and power transmission and distribution equipment; industrial equipment, including the production and sale of elevators and motors; modern service industry, including the contracting of construction projects of thermal power and transmission and distribution projects, as well as other businesses.