UAE's Masdar plans new hub to develop solar technologies

Abu Dhabi's green energy firm says Solar Hub will support emirate's plan to diversify energy mix by 2020
UAE's Masdar plans new hub to develop solar technologies
By Staff writer
Sun 26 Apr 2015 02:25 PM

Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company, and the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, has announced plans to launch the Masdar Solar Hub to expedite the development of solar technologies.

The new hub aims to support Abu Dhabi’s efforts to achieve its ambitions for solar energy development and deployment through research and demonstration of cutting-edge solar photovoltaic, solar thermal and thermal energy storage technologies.

"Collaborations are essential for a thriving innovation ecosystem, as they facilitate dialogue between industry leaders and government, and support the development of novel, game-changing technologies," said Dr Ahmad Belhoul, CEO of Masdar.

"The Masdar Solar Hub is expected to become a successful catalyst for solar energy development in Abu Dhabi and across the region while training human resources for Abu Dhabi’s energy sector."

He said the aim of the Masdar Solar Hub, the first independent solar testing and R&D facility in the UAE, is to build a high-performance testing infrastructure in the region, providing the foundation for new product development, co-operation with local and international companies and the creation of new solar companies in Abu Dhabi.

A statement said the hub will provide unbiased research, development, testing, evaluation and certification of solar technologies and systems, as well as consulting and information services.

"The Masdar Solar Hub will enable researchers to engage in significant development and testing to create efficient solar technologies that can operate at maximum capacity in the region’s unfavourable climactic conditions," said Dr Fred Moavenzadeh, president of Masdar Institute.

The hub is part of Abu Dhabi’s mandate to provide 7 percent of its power generation capacity with renewable energy technologies by 2020.

The price of electricity from solar power has declined by 75 percent over the past seven years and this year global solar photovoltaic capacity alone is expected to grow by 25 percent.

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