Masdar’s solar power plant becomes net exporter of energy to UAE

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The largest photovoltaic (PV) plant in the MENA region located in Masdar City has hit all performance targets in the first two years of its operations and has become a net exporter of energy to to Abu Dhabi electrical grid, Masdar announced.

The 10 MW PV plant, which is one of five projects in the UAE registered for carbon credits under the United Nation’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), entered its third year of operations in June 2011. Since operations began, the plant has saved 24,000 tonnes in CO2 emissions, which is the equivalent of taking 3,300 cars off Abu Dhabi’s roads.

The 10MW solar plant, consisting of 87,777 panels of thin film and crystalline silicon technologies, and connected to the Abu Dhabi National Grid, has so far generated approximately 36,000MWh of clean energy. The plant is a net exporter of energy to the grid after it meets the entire energy needs of the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology (M.I.S.T.) in Masdar City.

“The success of the 10MW PV plant is a good example of how Masdar integrates research, development and innovation with investment, sustainable production, and deployment,” said Frank Wouters, Director, Masdar Power, one of the five integrated units of Masdar.

“The utility-scale PV plant has also enabled our engineers to gain insights into ways different PV technologies respond to the region’s climactic conditions. The expertise and knowledge gained will serve as a valuable reference point for other utility-scale PV projects in the region,” Wouters added.

The connection of the 10MW solar power plant to Abu Dhabi’s electrical grid was a joint effort by Masdar, Abu Dhabi Distribution Company (ADDC) and the Emirate’s regulatory body, the Regulation and Supervision Bureau. ADDC, Abu Dhabi’s main grid holder is responsible for operating and developing the distribution networks.

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