ABB technology harnesses the power of the sun for expansive Dubai solar project

22 February 2018

As the United Arab Emirates (UAE) grows its solar capabilities, ABB solar inverters help villa owners in Hatta reduce energy bills by up to 40 percent.

Earlier this month, UAE announced ambitious plans to invest $163bn to generate almost half the country’s power needs from renewable sources by 2050, with the aim to increase clean-energy contributions to 50 percent by 2050.

As part of this move to harness the power of the sun, ABB is supplying 600 UNO-DM-PLUS grid-connected single phase solar inverters to power new-build villas in Hatta, Dubai.

The high-profile installation is being sponsored by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) which is offering free solar panel installation across the 600 villas to all UAE nationals in Hatta. The project management, procurement, installation, testing and commissioning, along with subsequent Operations and Management is being undertaken by Dubai Carbon Centre of Excellence (DCCE) and Al Mostajed Technologies Co LLC (AMT).

The Hatta project spans 200km and falls under the Shams Dubai initiative, which is installing solar panels on buildings throughout Dubai to provide self-generated solar power in all homes and generate electricity that can be fed into the electricity grid, ultimately reducing reliance on fossil-burning electrical generating plants. The project also meets with the Hatta Comprehensive Development Plan.

ABB will install 600 UNO-DM-4.0-TL-Plus-SB single phase string inverters, together with its Aurora web monitoring platform for effective monitoring and maintenance, on roofs of the state-of-the-art villas in Hatta, a popular vacation getaway to escape the heat of Dubai.

Loay Dajani, Lead Division Manager for ABB’s Electrification Products Division in Middle East and Africa said: “ABB has been leading the way in developing solar technology and is committed to supporting government initiatives that connect renewables to the grid. We have already completed prestigious projects in UAE and across the globe, helping infrastructure providers and utilities bring sustainable and reliable power to people.

“In UAE, ABB is ‘walking the talk’ by integrating roof top PV power to our facility at Al Quoz in Dubai, which is one of the largest privately owned solar rooftop installations in the region. It’s about cutting-edge technology working in harmony with natural resources to make the world we live in more sustainable.”

ABB’s UNO-DM-4.0-TL- PLUS series provides the optimal solution for residential PV installations. Available in a power range of 1.2 to 5.0 kW, the inverter has a compact design and delivers a higher performance with excellent power density. Further efficiencies are gained, with installation times greatly reduced due to the presence of Plug and Play connectors that remove the need to open the inverter cover, allowing for simple, fast and cost-effective installation. Meanwhile, an easy commissioning WIFI wizard simplifies the configuration process, resulting in lower installation time and reduced costs.

This flexible, future-proof inverter with embedded connectivity and efficient communication protocol, allows the UNO-DM-PLUS to be integrated easily within any current or future device for smart building automation, smart grid integration and third-party monitoring and control systems.

For robust plant monitoring and management, the installation includes ABB’s Aurora Vision Plant Management Platform, a cloud-cloud based solution using ABB Ability™, which is available through a web browser user interface to PV plant data. Aurora provides highly interactive, real-time access to key performance and operations metrics to help plant management optimize decisions.

“Given the nature of the installation across the 200km site, it was important that solar panels could be maintained without the need to disturb residents. With Aurora, the seamless connection to the management platform provides robust visibility so that site interferences can be minimized, and predictive maintenance used to drive efficiency. It’s another great example of ABB connected solutions with ABB Ability™ working together with our natural resources to make people’s lives easier with minimal disruption to living and services.”

The installation will be complete by summer 2018 and will be supported by ABB’s dedicated team of experienced professionals in the UAE.

Ivano Iannelli, CEO of Dubai Carbon said: “Our partnership with ABB has gone beyond the Hatta project installation, where ABB has provided its expertise in ensuring the economic viability of the Hatta solar kits so they can be replicated across the entire UAE community under the Safaqat initiative.

“Their innovation and cost is not only ensuring that upfront investments are minimized, but rather that the overall return on investment is maximized for the benefit of the end user. We are pleased to have forged a strategic partnership with ABB, that will not only help provide transformative results for this project, but also help us build new capabilities and support us in our journey to position Dubai as the capital of green economy, and the UAE at the forefront of change.”

Qasim Hasan, Senior GM - Smart Grid at Al Mostajed Technologies commented: “Al Mostajed are proud to be part of the implementation of the Hatta Solar Villas project. This project further strengthens our portfolio related to the Smart Grid and adds to our growing experience in the solar field. We remain committed to the vision of increased sustainability and smarter grids.”