Last week, Dubai Water and Electricity Authority (DEWA) announced building the world’s largest solar power plant comprising of 5 individual facilities. The sheer size of this project can be estimated from the fact that the plant will produce 1000MW of energy by 2020 and when fully complete in 2030, it will churn out a whopping 5000MW of clean solar energy which will increase Dubai’s power output by 25%.
The current largest solar power plant in terms of power is California’s Ivanpah Concentrated Solar Plant (CSP) which is totally dwarfed by DEWA’s new project. The project costs are being estimated and it will be housed in the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, where facilities are already in place to handle the expansion of the project.
Concentrated solar power (CSP) is much different than traditional photovoltaic generation. Concentrated solar plants typically use circular arrays of heliostats that focus sunlight on a large tower, which heats a conductive fluid. This fluid then drives steam turbines that generate the output electricity. This is the preferred method to use now because it allows for power generation even during night.
Environmentally speaking, the new solar project in Dubai will remove 6.5 million tons of carbon emissions per year off the global energy market and make loads of clean energy. This project is a part of the initiative by Dubai’s authorities to move 75% of all the country’s power to green sources by 2050.