UAE inaugurates its largest power and desalination plant

desalination3The M Station consists of six gas turbines for power production. (Image source: Arun Katiyar/Flickr)Dubai has inaugurated the UAE's largest power and desalination plant in a move to boost power generation and water production in the emirate

The US$272.2 million gas-fired M Station, located in Jebel Ali, will be operated by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and have a capacity of 2,060MW and 140mn gallons of water a day.

The plant consists of six gas turbines for power production and the hot exhaust gases will be fed through boilers that heat seawater to produce steam.

The steam will then be used to either to drive steam turbines, produce more power, or fed through the eight desalination units to produce drinking water.

Saeed Al Tayer, manageing director of DEWA, said, “We are utilising the waste heat in order to produce either water or power.”

Al Tayer claimed that the facility’s advanced technologies would reduce greenhouse gas emissions and generate power and water with a minimal carbon footprint.

Yahya Alzafin, vice president of generation at DEWA, added, “The inauguration of M Station is in line with our efforts to increase electricity and water production capacity to meet the economic growth in Dubai.”

The water pipes that feed other Jebel Ali stations stretch one kilometre out to sea, but those serving the M Station are located just offshore, in a precautionary arrangement designed to prevent operations from being affected by spills from oil tankers in the Gulf, according to DEWA.

The liquid produced by the desalination units in the plant will lack essential minerals required in drinking water; these will, however, be added at the end of the purification process by placing limestone in vessels containing the water, which will then absorb the necessary salts.

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