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Dubai studies use of geothermal in desal plants

The study will also include exploring the potential for tidal, wave and ocean currents as a source for power generation

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Geothermal is more suitable for applications such as desalination rather than power generation since UAE’s temperatures are below 200°C
Geothermal is more suitable for applications such as desalination rather than power generation since UAE’s temperatures are below 200°C

Dubai could soon pioneer the use of geothermal energy to provide power needs in desalination plants, with preliminary studies into the energy source already showing promising results.

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) is requesting proposals for an early-stage feasibility study on producing electricity from geothermal energy and its use in desalination, reported The National.

The study will also include exploring the potential for tidal, wave and ocean currents as a source for power generation.

Experts told the newspaper that geothermal is more suitable for applications such as desalination rather than power generation since UAE’s temperatures are below 200°C, the minimum temperature required for power generation from geothermal energy, which is a result of heat from beneath the Earth’s surface.

The GCC’s geothermal resources were only suitable for low-temperature applications, averaging about 100°C, said Steve Griffiths, the vice president for research at Abu Dhabi’s Masdar Institute.

Dubai’s Clean Energy Strategy includes the aim to generate 75 per cent of its electricity from clean energy sources by 2050.

While UAE has the advantage of exploiting geothermal energy in the same drilling techniques used to explore oil and gas, it is yet to take advantage of the greater potential presented by the sea to generate electricity on a large scale.

The European Commission estimates that 0.1% of the energy in ocean waves could be capable of supplying the entire world’s energy needs five times over, according to The National.

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