Sheikh Mohammed inaugurates 5th phase’s 1st stage of world’s largest single-site solar park

By Arya M Nair, Official Reporter
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Sheikh Mohammed Solar Park
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His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai has inaugurated the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park’s 300 megawatts (MW) first stage of the 900MW fifth phase.

The solar park, which was built by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) under the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model, is the world’s largest single-site solar park, which is expected to produce a total capacity of 5,000MW by 2030.

According to DEWA, the fifth phase investments amount to $560 million. The Solar Park’s projects are one of the pillars of Dubai’s Clean Energy Strategy 2050, which aspires to provide 75 percent of Dubai’s total power capacity from renewable sources by 2050. 

The Preferred Bidder for the fifth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park using photovoltaic (PV) solar panels based on the IPP model was announced by DEWA in November 2019 as a consortium led by ACWA Power and Gulf Investment Corporation.

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer

“The project to generate electricity using wind power is part of our efforts to diversify clean and renewable energy sources in Dubai. These include photovoltaic solar panels technology, Concentrated Solar Power (CSP), green hydrogen production using renewable energy, and pumped-storage technology in the hydroelectric power station in Hatta.”

DEWA set a global record by receiving the lowest bid for this phase, which was $1.69 per kilowatt-hour (Levelised Cost of Energy). International developers submitted a total of 60 Requests for Qualifications (RFQ).

The project’s latest technologies allow solar radiation to reach the front and back of the panels, with single-axis tracking to increase generation. The fifth phase will provide clean energy to over 270,000 residences in Dubai, including 90,000 residences by the commissioned first stage, and will reduce 1.18 million tons of carbon emissions annually.

Commissioning the 300MW first stage of the fifth phase of the Solar Park increases DEWA’s total capacity of clean energy to 1,310MW. This brings clean energy capacity in Dubai’s energy mix to around 10 percent. DEWA’s production capacity has increased to 13,200MW of electricity and 490 million imperial gallons of desalinated water per day (MIGD).

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