French energy giant, EDF has announced that the first 200 MW section of the 800-MW Dewa III facility, which is phase III of the 1 GW Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, has now been connected to Dubai’s power network.
The company said that the following two 300 MW units will be commissioned in 2019 and 2020, respectively. “This new project, which is being delivered in accordance with a challenging schedule, illustrates our workforce’s know-how when it comes to developing large solar plants,” said Bruno Bensasson, the company’s Executive Vice-President in charge of renewable energies.
EDF joined the consortium building phase III of the project last March; construction began last January, however. The consortium is formed by UAE solar developer, Masdar, and Spain-based GranSolar. Financial close for the 800 MW plant was reached in June.
The consortium was awarded the project thanks to a bid of US$0.00299 cents per kWh which, when it was announced in May 2016, was the world’s lowest bid for a large-scale solar project.
The conclusion of phase II of the 1 GW project, which has a capacity of 200 MW, was announced by the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) in March 2017, while the first 13 MW phase was completed by First Solar in late 2013.
The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park will be the world’s largest single-site solar park based on the Independent Power Producer model (IPP), when complete. The capacity targets for the park have been set at 1 GW by 2020, and 5 GW by 2030, with total investment expected to reach $13.6 billion.