ACWA Power inaugurates 300MW in Dubai Solar Park

By Dominic Ellis
ACWA Power has inaugurated the 300MW first stage of the 900MW Shuaa Energy 3, the fifth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai

ACWA Power has inaugurated the 300MW first stage of the 900MW Shuaa Energy 3, the fifth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai.

The fifth phase was awarded to an ACWA Power led consortium at a tariff of 1.6953-dollar cent per kWh last year and brings the current production capacity of the park to 1,313 MW.

Once fully operational, it will be the largest single-site solar park in the world based on the Independent Power Producer (IPP) model, with a planned production capacity of 5,000MW, saving over 6.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually.

Shuaa Energy 3 PSC is the special purpose vehicle incorporated for the project, with 60 percent owned by the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) and the remaining 40% split between ACWA Power and Gulf Investment Corporation (GIC).

It is expected to power 270,000 residential units, and offset carbon emissions amounting to 1.18 million tons per year in Dubai. The project will use the latest bifacial photovoltaic solar panels, which captures sunlight on both sides of the panel and produces energy with an advanced solar tracking system to increase generation efficiency by 20%.

The project will feature a state-of-the-art automated solar panel cleaning system, with 2662 automatic cleaning robots positioned around the plant. The system guarantees a cleaning factor of 99.3%, further optimising the productivity and operational capability of the plant.

The 13MW photovoltaic first phase of the park became operational in 2013. The 200MW photovoltaic second phase of the solar park, developed by ACWA Power, was launched in March 2017. Work on the fourth phase 950MW, CSP and PV hybrid Noor Energy 1 is underway and on track by an ACWA Power led consortium. The fifth phase is expected to be commissioned in phases later this year.

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