Msheireb Downtown Doha gets first solar panels

Innovations Unlimited installs PV modules at $5.5bn development

The Msheireb Downtown Doha project conceived upon completion.
The Msheireb Downtown Doha project conceived upon completion.

The first photovoltaic (PV) solar panels at the $5.5bn (QAR 20bn) Msheireb Downtown Doha (MDD) project have been installed by renewable energy firm Innovations Unlimited ME.

Mounted on the roof, the modules will supply a portion of the electricity needs of the buildings within the first phase of the development.

As many as 2,072 PV panels and 37 inverters are being installed, feeding a total of 463.4 kWp (kilowatts at peak power) of electricity and will feed directly into the electrical grid of the development with the aim of significantly reducing the buildings' carbon emissions.

Eng. Abdulla Hassan Al-Mehshadi, CEO at Msheireb Properties said: “Adopting advanced clean technology such as solar energy in addition to traditional methods of climate management is a hallmark of the Msheireb project which will have one of the largest concentrations of LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified buildings in the world on completion. Our partnership with Innovations Unlimited ME to install advanced solar power within Phase 1 of the development will help us move steadily towards achieving this goal.”

When the Downtown Doha project is complete, it will have 5,200 solar panels across a total of 8,400m² of onsite energy production in the form of both electricity and hot water.

Each year, it is estimated that the solar PV system will reduce total greenhouse gas emissions by 568 metric tonnes, which is equivalent to 241,000 litres of gasoline consumed.

Photovoltaic solar panels use sunlight to generate electricity through the photovoltaic effect -the creation of an electric current within certain materials when those materials are exposed to light. Solar panels are designed to capture this electricity so it can be utilised.

Msheireb Properties says the development of Downtown Doha, which claims to be the world's first sustainable regeneration of a downtown area in a major city, is progressing well with infrastructure works now complete.

Construction of the National Archive and the Heritage Quarter is on track to finish this year.

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