Ras Al Khaimah plans floating solar power plants

14/09/2010 -
Ras Al Khaimah plans floating solar power plants

Posted by Neil King

Ras Al Khaimah is aiming to develop a number of floating solar islands off its coast as it looks to boost its power capacity, it has been revealed.

CSEM-UAE, the company behind the project, is currently testing a prototype that could lead to the development of a substantial offshore solar infrastructure, the National reported.

According to the newspaper, the solar islands may range in size from 500m to 5km in diameter and hover up to 20m off the ground.

It was also revealed that small prototypes are currently being tested in the desert with the capability to produce up to one megawatt (MW) of power or enough to cool or heat a small shopping mall.

"The basic technology is known and it works," Dr Hamid Kayal, chief executive of CSEM-UAE, told the National. "The problem is not in the technology, the problem is using it in a reliable and an effective way. The prototype is not to show we can produce electricity; it is to show how economically we can produce it, at what size, and where."

RAK's government is providing funding for the project on a six-month basis, with results from the prototype expected in two years.

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