ADNOC and the National Central Cooling Company PJSC (Tabreed), have announced a collaboration on a geothermal energy project which will decarbonise the cooling of buildings at Masdar City, Abu Dhabi
Two geothermal wells were tested, which produced hot water at temperatures exceeding 90 degrees celsius and flow rates of approximately 100 litres per second (l/s). The hot water generated by the heat from the wells will now pass through an absorption cooling system to produce chilled water, which will then be supplied to Tabreed’s district cooling network at Masdar City, accounting for 10% of its cooling needs. Tapping geothermal heat for district cooling operations has the potential to significantly reduce electricity demand for cooling from the grid.
Musabbeh Al Kaabi, ADNOC executive director for Low Carbon Solutions and International Growth, said, “Across ADNOC, we are developing and deploying innovative climate technologies and low carbon solutions to deliver on our accelerated decarbonisation plan and net zero by 2045 ambition. Geothermal heat is a clean and renewable source of energy abundantly available in the UAE and capable of providing baseload electricity. However, until now, it has remained an untapped source of energy. By leveraging technological advances, for the first time ADNOC and Tabreed have unlocked this clean energy source to decarbonise one of the most energy intensive sectors in the country.”
Khalid Al Marzooqi, CEO, Tabreed, commented, “The integration of geothermal energy with district cooling operations represents a significant advancement in the UAE's journey towards diversifying its energy mix and achieving net zero by 2050. We are proud of our collaboration with ADNOC to accelerate our decarbonisation efforts in the leadup to COP28, which also underscores our commitment to exploring the latest technologies and harnessing the power of renewables to meet the rising demand for sustainable cooling.”
The project is the first in the region to harness geothermal energy, according to ADNOC. ADNOC is working with several companies to move forward geothermal energy in the UAE using the latest drilling and power generation technologies.