• Enerwhere is expected to commission an 80 kW pilot floating solar PV project on Nurai island of Abu Dhabi
  • The pilot project is complete and is expected to be commissioned soon
  • It will be the first floating solar plant in the UAE and the Middle East as well and will supply power to nearby Zaya Nurai Resort
  • Ecocoast has been engaged to provide its Ecomoor mooring solutions for the floating PV facility

Abu Dhabi’s small resort island Nurai is all set to commission what would be the first floating solar power plant in the Middle East as Dubai based solar project developer Enerwhere gets ready to bring it online. According to media reports, the 80 kW facility is being developed as a pilot project that may work as a test bed to plan similar projects in the region.

Enerwhere has finished setting up the project as EPC provider of Zaya Nurai island; project commissioning is set to take place anytime soon.The island sources all of its electricity since 2016 from a solar-hybrid mini-grid installed by the Dubai company. It claims this project is one among the world’s first floating solar installations in an offshore, salt water environment. On commissioning, it will supply power to Zaya Nurai Resort.

For the 80 kW pilot project, Enerwhere has engaged the services of Dubai’s Ecocoast, a company that provides marine products, to supply its Ecomoor mooring system to help the floating PV station swim on the sea surface.

Gulf News quoted Enerwhere’s Head of the Off-grid division, Feras Shadid adding that around 150 islands in Abu Dhabi that are mostly dependent on diesel power generation could benefit from floating solar PV technology. He said the company will go in for World Islands in Dubai next and will venture overseas to deploying this technology in Maldives and Seychelles.

As the World Bank and Singapore’s SERIS calculate global floating solar PV potential at at least 400 GW in a conservative scenario; they claim till 2018-end the world had over 1.3 GW floating PV capacity installed (see World Bank & SERIS Release Floating PV Handbook).