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Construction progress on 260m tower of Dubai's MBR Solar Park

Solar tower's base, comprising 19,000 tonnes of concrete, has been completed as 260-metre structure notes 33% completion

Phase 4 of MBR Solar Park features a 260m solar tower.
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Phase 4 of MBR Solar Park features a 260m solar tower.

Construction work has progressed on the concentrated solar power (CSP) tower being developed within the $4.3bn (AED15.8bn) Phase 4 of Mohammed Bin Rashid al Maktoum Solar Park (MBR Solar Park), backed by Dubai Water and Electricity Authority (Dewa).

The concrete base of the CSP tower has been completed. Abdul Hamid Al Muhaidib, executive managing director of Noor Energy 1

Dewa noted that work on the 260m-tall CSP tower is on track, and 33% of engineering work for the scheme has been completed.

Commenting on the tower’s concrete base, Al Muhaidib said: "The concrete base of the tower comprises about 1,300 tonnes of steel rebar and concrete, which is equivalent to 20% of Paris’s Eiffel Tower."

Concrete used for the base weighs more than 19,000 tonnes, which is equivalent to the weight of 34 fully occupied Airbus A380 planes, filled with 555 passengers.

Based on the independent power producer (IPP) model, MBR Solar Park's fourth phase is the largest single-site CSP project in the world. The project aims at portraying Dubai as a hub of clean and renewable energy globally and thereby bolster its move towards solar power.

On 1 April, 2019, HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, managing director and chief executive officer of Dewa, was briefed on construction work for Phase 4 of the 950-megawatt MBR Solar Park by Al Muhaidib.

Noor Energy 1 was formed through a partnership between Dewa, Saudi Arabia’s Acwa Power, and China’s Silk Road Fund, and will build the solar park’s phase 4.

Phase 4 will feature 700 MW of CSP; 600 MW from a parabolic basin complex; and 100 MW from its 260m solar tower.

The park’s 13 MW Phase 1 was began operations in 2013, whilst the 200 MW second phase launched in March 2017. Phase 3 began operations in May 2018.

Earlier this month, American chemical giant Dow announced it had been awarded a subcontract for the Phase 4 along with China’s Shanghai Electric to provide on-ground services related to Dowtherm, a heat transfer fluid capable of resisting temperatures as high as 400°C to collect, transport, and store heat in CSP systems.

Once complete, MBR Solar Park will produce 5,000 MW of clean and renewable by 2030, with investments in the project totalling $13.6bn (AED50bn).

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