HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), conducted a field visit to the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park. The solar park shows the vision of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to promote sustainability and transform Dubai into a global centre for clean energy and green economy.
Al Tayer was accompanied by Nasser Lootah, Executive Vice President of Generation, Waleed Salman, Executive Vice President of Business Development & Excellence, Khawla Al Mehairi, Executive Vice President of Strategy & Government Communications, and Jamal Shaheen Al Hammadi, Vice President of Special Projects.
The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park is the largest single-site solar park in the world, and is based on the Independent Power Producer Model (IPP). The solar park has a planned capacity of 5,000 megawatts (MW) by 2030, at a total investment of AED 50 billion. The solar park will contribute to achieving the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 (DCES 2050), to provide 75% of Dubai’s total power output from clean energy by 2050.
Shuaa Energy 2 briefed Al Tayer on the progress of the 800MW third phase of the solar park, which was established by DEWA, which owns a 60% stake in the company. Shuaa Energy 2 was launched in partnership with the Masdar-led consortium, and Électricité de France (EDF), through its subsidiary EDF Energies Nouvelles. The consortium owns the remaining 40% of Shuaa Energy 2. Masdar owns 24% and EDF Energies Nouvelles owns 16%. The international consortium led by the renewable energy contractor GranSolar from Spain, is handling the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC). It includes Acciona from Spain and Ghella from Italy.
The 800MW third phase will be completed in 3 stages over 16 square kilometres. The first 200MW stage is expected to be operational by April 2018. The 300MW second stage will be operational in the first half of 2019, and the third 300MW stage will be completed in the first half of 2020. 
Al Tayer was briefed about the progress of the construction work at the Innovation Centre, by representatives from Hadeed Emirates Contracting Company and Italdeco Company. It features an interactive facility that’s equipped with the latest clean and renewable energy technologies and will be a platform to demonstrate them. It will enable DEWA to also show its own achievements in renewable energy and sustainability, and highlight the green strategies incorporated in the DCES 2050. The building is 4,000 square metres, and 90 metres high with 5 floors.
The centre will develop renewable energy technologies, raise awareness about climate change and sustainable energy, create interactive presentations, and educate individuals about solar energy. The Innovation Centre will act as a museum and exhibition for solar and renewable energy and hopes to attract tourists, universities, schools, companies, and partners. It will be open to solar power manufacturers and developers as it has a specialised place and permanent convention centre for events and conferences, business meetings, training and meetings on subjects related to solar and renewable energy and other green initiatives.
Al Tayer also reviewed DEWA’s pilot project to install Sodium Sulphur (NAS) batteries by NGK to store energy at the solar park. The batteries will be commissioned and energised by the end of March 2018. The storage power capacity of these batteries is estimated at 1.2 MW with energy output of at least 6 MWh.
In the first phase of the project, the Energy Storage System (ESS) will be installed and tested for 10 years, to integrate renewable energies and improve operating services. It will serve as a testing platform to assess the potential contribution of this technology to other operating services.

Photo Credit: DEWA