The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) announced the inauguration of a pilot project for energy storage at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park this week. The project has a power capacity of 1.21 MW and an energy capacity of 8.61 MWh. DEWA is using Tesla’s Powerpack batteries. HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA, gave the following statement:

“Our strategy and work plans are guided by the vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to ensure energy security and sustainability. We have an integrated vision to achieve these directives with three main pillars: The first is to produce more clean energy, especially solar energy, under the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050. The second is to decouple the desalination process from the production of electricity and desalinate water using a combination of clean energy sources and waste heat. The third is disrupting the role of utilities using Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies, such as AI, UAVs, energy storage, blockchain, the Internet of Things (IoT), and many more.

“The energy storage project using Tesla’s lithium-ion battery solution at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest single-site solar park in the world, aims to diversify the energy mix and enhance energy storage technologies. This supports our efforts to achieve the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, which aims to provide 75% of Dubai’s total power capacity from clean energy sources by 2050 and make Dubai a global hub for clean energy and a green economy.  The pilot project will evaluate the technical and economic capabilities of this technology within the operational framework of electricity systems in solar photovoltaic power plants. It also tests the role of this technology in the integration between clean energy and energy storage to achieve maximum efficiency and reliability.”

Al Tayer added that DEWA is implementing other energy projects, including concentrated solar power (CSP), in the 4th phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. This combines CSP and photovoltaic solar panels with a total production capacity of 950 MW, DEWA noted. Once completed, the project will have the largest global thermal storage capacity in the world — 15 hours worth of storage.

DEWA added that there are plans to implement a 250 MW pumped-storage hydroelectric power station in Hatta and that this will be the first of its kind in the Arabian Gulf region. The power station will generate electricity by using water stored at the Hatta Dam and will have a storage capacity of 1,500 MWh. DEWA also launched a green hydrogen project alongside Expo 2020 Dubai and Siemens Energy to produce green hydrogen using solar power.

Executive Vice President of Business Development and Excellence at DEWA, Waleed Bin Salman, said that the lithium-ion energy storage pilot project is DEWA’s second at the solar park. The first was in collaboration with AMPLEX–NGK. They installed and tested a sodium-sulfur energy solution that has a power capacity of 1.2 MW. It also has an energy capacity of 7.5 MWh.

Bin Salman added that both pilot systems allow bi-directional charging — meaning that they can be charged from the grid and/or solar plant and discharged to the grid.


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