Sustainable research centers in UAE being built on SDME designs

2 min read
  • In the UAE many sustainable research centers based on the designs of the teams participating in the first and second Solar Decathlon Middle East are being constructed
  • SDMEs were organized by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority as part of its, Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and the US Department of Energy partnership

Several regions across the UAE are witnessing the implementation of the designs of some of the teams that participated in the first and second Solar Decathlon Middle East (SDME) to construct sustainable research centers and laboratories.

The SDME was held under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council.

It was organized by Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), as part of a partnership between the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy and DEWA with the US Department of Energy.

The first (2018) and second (2021) SDMEs were held for the first time in the Middle East and Africa at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest single-site solar park in the world.

“We are pleased to see the positive impact of the competition in Dubai and its support for the Dubai 2040 Urban Master Plan launched by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai,” said Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice Chairman of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, and MD & CEO of DEWA.

“The Master Plan outlines an integrated roadmap for urban development based on sustainable development to make Dubai the world’s best place to live. At DEWA, we are working on launching and incubating initiatives, programs and competitions that consolidate the UAE and Dubai’s position as a hub for creativity and innovation,” he said.

“We are also consolidating UAE and Dubai’s position as an incubator for innovators, to develop innovative solutions that fight climate change and engage youth in sustainable development,” he added.

Among the teams who are implementing their plans in different Emirates in the UAE are the BaityKool team from the University of Bordeaux, France, Amity University in the UAE; An-Najah National University in Palestine; Team Aqua Green from Ajman University; Team Desert Rose from Wollongong (UOW) Australia; Sharjah Team from the University of Sharjah; and Esteem from Heriot-Watt University in the UK and Heriot-Watt in Dubai.

Professor Tim McCarthy, Director, Sustainable Buildings Research Center, University of Wollongong, Australia; Dr. Naglaa Mahmoud, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Engineering (Architecture) at Ajman University; and Dr. Philippe Lagiere, Assistant Professor Université de Bordeaux, highlighted the importance of the opportunity offered by the SDME to test the projects of the participants in reality and using special programs for the first time.

This has enabled them to improve their designs and better understand their strengths and weaknesses, as well as strengthen the experiences of all team members and their communication skills.

The competition was one of the largest among international universities, with total prizes exceeding US$ 5.4 million (AED 20 million).


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