March 15th, 2006
H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance and Industry today unveiled the blueprint of the AED 250 million district cooling plant being built by EMPOWER for Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC).
The unveiling took place at the Water, Energy, Technology & Environment Exhibition (WETEX 2006) being held at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre from 13 - 15 March.
"The DHCC plant is one of the many district cooling plants we are building for some of Dubai's leading projects," said Ahmad Bin Shafar, CEO of EMPOWER. "Safe, reliable energy is central to the operation of industry clusters and the plant will provide a highly energy-efficient solution for DHCC's cooling needs."
EMPOWER also announced that it has signed an AED 50 million contract with AST Overseas to develop the piping network for the cooling plant.
The piping network will supply 56,000 tons of cooling over the next quarter of a century for DHCC. Phase 1 of the project covers a massive 4.1 million square feet of land.
EMPOWER will cool water at the central cooling plant and distribute it through a network of piping systems to DHCC's individual buildings. Construction on the plant will begin this week. The plant will start providing chilled air by the beginning of 2007.
"We are glad to sign AST Overseas as our partners in developing this district cooling project," said Ahmad Bin Shafar, CEO of EMPOWER. "Selecting an infrastructure partner who can provide us with best-of-breed technology is key to the success of the project.
EMPOWER was formed in December 2003 as a joint venture between the Dubai Technology and Media Free Zone and the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA).
EMPOWER's District Cooling System (DCS) is a considerably more cost-efficient alternative to air-cooled chiller systems. While chiller plants account for up to 60 per cent of electricity usage in large buildings, DCS substantially reduces electricity usage.
Additionally there are benefits from reduced maintenance, enhanced efficiency and reliability, space savings, flexibility of air-conditioning load and a plant life that is twice that of traditional plants, all of which considerably reduce costs.