By Joseph Varghese
Qatar Foundation (QF) has announced the launch of the Gulf region’s first Energy Monitoring Centre (EMC) to manage its smart grid and monitor solar power generation across all sites within Education City.
QF is now responsible for up to 85% of Qatar’s solar photovoltaic (PV) current installed capacity of roughly 4 megawatts, officials revealed yesterday. It is also the first commercial PV project in Qatar approved for grid connection from Kahramaa.
“The advanced EMC, which is one of the first-of-its-kind in the region, marks the integration and centralisation of Qatar Foundation’s ongoing efforts to remain at the forefront of energy efficiency through the adoption of a smart solar system,” said Jassim Telefat, group executive director of QF Capital Projects and Facilities Management.
The EMC is part of the recently completed Solar Smart-Grid Project that added a total of 1.68MW of new PV systems at various facilities within the QF campus. QF will have almost 8 MW solar energy installations in future making it the largest renewable energy producer in Qatar.
The PV systems at QF generate 5,180 megawatt hours of clean energy annually, resulting in savings of around 2,590 tonnes of CO2 emissions every year. The EMC will also be connected to the Kahramaa Conservation and Efficiency Control Centre to showcase the amount of solar energy, Qatar Foundation’s PV systems are feeding into the central power grid.
The EMC also integrates existing solar systems at the Qatar National Convention Centre, the QF Student Housing Complex and the Solar Testing Facility at Qatar Science and Technology Park.
Ibrahim al-Haidos, project manager Solar Smart Grid, QF, said that the energy produced through the grid offset annual electricity usage of 471 Qatari houses. He said: “Its carbon emission saving is equivalent to conserving 6,023 barrels of oil annually or growing 66,410 tree seedlings for 10 years.”
“EMC is the first of its kind energy monitoring system in the Gulf allowing real time monitoring at 15 centres at QF. The installation of photovoltaic car park shades provide cover for 270 car parking bays and generate 0.782 MW. There is also roof top retrofit for the existing buildings of four universities generating 0.900 MW power,” he added.
Developed by GreenGulf, in partnership with QF Capital Projects and ASTAD Project Management, the EMC will enable real-time administration of all solar and power quality monitoring systems from a central location aiding in their efficient operations and maintenance.
Dr Khalid K al-Hajri, chairman and CEO of Qatar Solar Technologies, said: “Qatar Foundation’s leadership are visionaries in their use of solar technologies and the many initiatives undertaken to utilise this sustainable energy resource by Qatar Foundation is a showcase to the region and the world on the adoption and use of solar energy solutions.”