Dubai opens 800 MW PV tender, commissioning set for 2018

The Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has officially opened an 800 MW solar PV tender. It is the country’s third, and will see 800 MW added to the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, of which work on the second 200 MW phase is currently underway.

Bids for the latest tender will close on September 29. Meanwhile, commissioning of the 800 MW is set to commence, in phases, in 2018. All generated energy will be purchased by DEWA under a 25 year PPA.

The first 13 MW of the solar PV went online in April 2013, and the second phase is expected to be completed in early 2017. First Solar was selected to supply the modules for the first two phases. A consortium, led by Saudi-based ACWA Power and TSK, a Spanish engineering and construction company, was also recently taken on to develop, construct, own and operate the project.

The second, 200 MW tender set a world record levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) figure of just 5.8 US cents/kWh. Commenting on the record at the Global Solar Leaders Summit 2015, running between September 14 and 16 in Dubai HE Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA, said, "This enabled us to increase the percentage of renewables in Dubai’s energy mix target from 1% to 7% by 2020 and from 5% to 15% by 2030, and raise the capacity of phase three of the Solar Park to 800MW based on the Independent Power Producer model." He added, "This is a landmark achievement that will put the UAE at the forefront of renewable and clean energy production in the region."

The solar park also features two testing facilities, one for PV and the other for CPV. "The centre is currently testing around 25 modules of PV panels from global manufacturers to check different properties and analyse the results to utilise them in research and development," continued Al Tayer.