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Wednesday, 15 November 2023

UAE’s Tabreed tests the world’s first in heat transfer technology in district cooling

Tabreed completes pilot project using heat transfer nanofluid tech: The UAE’s National Cooling Company (Tabreed) announced the results of a pilot project it carried out over the summer exploring how integrating nanofluid technology in the district cooling sector can lead to energy savings, according to a statement. The pilot project — which Tabreed says is the world’s first in heat transfer technologies — was carried out in partnership with Irish tech firm HT Materials Science (HTMS), which provided the UAE company its patented Maxwell nanofluids. Tabreed trialed the tech at one of its district cooling plants in Khalifah City, Abu Dhabi.

What are nanofluids and how do they impact district cooling? Nanofluids are liquids with high thermal conductivity that play a crucial role as coolants. The fluid improves the process of heat transferring in district cooling units to increase energy efficiency, according to research in Science Direct.

About HTMS’s Maxwell tech: The Maxwell nanoparticles are made up of aluminum oxide particles which are suspended in base fluids such as water to increase chilling capacity, the statement notes. Adding Maxwell’s fluid (at a 2% concentration of nanomaterials) to chilled water loops in the district cooling system, increases the cooling capacity of the system by 15%. This increase also enhances the efficiency of chillers, fan units, and pumps while minimizing power consumption and carbon output, Tabreed says.

The results: The Maxwell technology yielded a 13.6 % increase in the efficiency of the chillers at Tabreed’s facility, leading to an overall plant efficiency improvement of 9% against the same period last year, the statement notes. The UAE company — which is currently expanding globally — says applying Maxwell across its 89 district cooling plants would translate to some 200k tons of CO2 savings annually and could enhance overall energy efficiency by 9-15%. That energy efficiency improvements would amount to 335 GWh of energy savings.

Next steps: Tabreed and HTMS are currently studying further usage of Maxwell technology across the former’s district cooling assets, in a bid to push down energy consumption from the Gulf region’s cooling industry (which accounts for about 70% of the region’s power usage).

REMEMBER- MENA 💚 district cooling: District cooling — which the UN notes are 50% more energy efficient than conventional cooling alternatives — has taken off in MENA, with the UAE, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia, among others, launching a number of projects. Conventional cooling systems contribute over 7% of global greenhouse gas emissions, with estimates indicating that emissions will double by 2050.

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