Country for PR: United Kingdom
Contributor: PR Newswire Europe
Thursday, January 30 2020 - 01:56
NEOM Adopts Pioneering Solar Dome Technology for Sustainable Desalination Project
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Jan. 30, 2020 /PRNewswire-AsiaNet/ --

 - "Smart" approach to desalination harnesses solar power for water extraction, 
significantly lowering production costs and reducing brine discharge   

 - First of its kind technology is 100% carbon neutral and will shape the 
future of water desalination in NEOM, Saudi Arabia and the world 

 - Pilot project highlights NEOM's role as an accelerator of human progress and 
its fresh approach to environmental conservation 

NEOM announced on Wednesday that it will adopt pioneering solar technology to 
produce low cost, environmentally friendly water, strengthening NEOM's 
reputation as an emerging hub for innovation and conservation.

The company has signed an agreement with U.K.-based Solar Water Plc. to build 
the first ever "solar dome" desalination plants in NEOM, located in northwest 
Saudi Arabia. The pilot project promises to revolutionize the water 
desalination process, helping solve one of the world's most pressing problems – 
access to fresh water. 

Work on the first "solar dome" will begin in February and is expected to be 
completed by the end of 2020. 

At an estimated $0.34/m3, the cost of producing water via "solar dome" 
technology will be significantly lower than desalination plants using reverse 
osmosis methods. The technology will also significantly reduce the impact on 
the environment by producing more concentrated brine, a potentially harmful 
byproduct of the water extraction process. 

Commenting on the project, H.E. Abdulrahman Al-Fadli, Saudi Arabia's Minister 
of Environment, Water and Agriculture, said: "NEOM's adoption of this pilot 
supports Saudi Arabia's sustainability goals, as outlined in the country's 
National Water Strategy 2030, and is fully aligned with the sustainable 
development goals set out by the United Nations." 

Nadhmi Al-Nasr, CEO of NEOM, added: "Easy access to abundant seawater and fully 
renewable energy resources means NEOM is perfectly placed to produce low cost, 
sustainable fresh water through solar desalination. This type of technology is 
a powerful reminder of our commitment to supporting innovation, championing 
environmental conservation and delivering exceptional livability. Working 
together with the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture we can expand 
the implementation of this technology beyond NEOM." 

Solar Water's ground-breaking approach, developed at the U.K.'s Cranfield 
University, represents the first use, on a large scale, of Concentrating Solar 
Power (CSP) technology in seawater desalination. The process sees seawater 
pumped into a hydrological "solar dome" made from glass and steel, before it is 
superheated, evaporated and eventually precipitated as fresh water. 

The "solar dome" desalination process, which can also operate at night due to 
the stored solar energy generated throughout the day, will reduce the total 
amount of brine that is created during the water extraction process. Typically, 
the high salt concentration in brine makes it more difficult and expensive to 
process. The solar dome process helps prevent any damage to marine life as no 
brine is discharged into the sea. 

With over one billion people around the world lacking access to clean water 
every day, NEOM's solar desalination project will serve as a test case for 
other water scarce countries that are struggling to generate environmentally 
safe and sustainable sources of fresh water. 

Gavin van Tonder, Head of Water at NEOM, said: "We're really excited by the 
prospect of bringing cutting edge water technology and fresh industry thinking 
to NEOM. By using solar dome desalination techniques, we can build a highly 
effective, efficient water utility that is both future oriented and 
environmentally responsible."

David Reavley, CEO of Solar Water Plc, commented: "Currently, thousands of 
desalination plants around the world are heavily reliant on burning fossil 
fuels to extract water, poisoning our oceans in the process with excess brine. 
Our game changing desalination technology is 100% carbon neutral and entirely 
sustainable. In NEOM we have found a partner who has a strong vision of what a 
New Future looks like in harmony with nature."

NEOM, the flagship project of Saudi Arabia's post-oil diversification plan, is 
being built on a 26,500 km2 area in northwestern Saudi Arabia. It offers unique 
investment opportunities in economic sectors and real-estate development.

About NEOM

NEOM is an accelerator of human progress and a vision of what a New Future will 
look like. It is a region in northwest Saudi Arabia on the Red Sea being built 
from the ground up as a living laboratory – a place where entrepreneurship will 
chart the course for this New Future. It will be a destination and a home for 
people who dream big and want to be part of building a new model for 
exceptional livability, creating thriving businesses, and reinventing 
environmental conservation.   

NEOM will be the home and workplace to more than a million residents from 
around the world. It will include towns and cities, ports and enterprise zones, 
research centers, sports and entertainment venues, and tourist destinations.   

As a hub for innovation, entrepreneurs, business leaders and companies will 
come to research, incubate and commercialize new technologies and enterprises 
in ground breaking ways. Residents of NEOM will embody an international ethos 
and embrace a culture of exploration, risk-taking and diversity - all supported 
by a progressive law compatible with international norms and conducive to 
economic growth. 

About Solar Water Plc

Solar Water Plc is the provider of breakthrough, innovative technology for the 
generation of fresh water in a carbon neutral and completely sustainable 
manner, utilizing the concentrating power of sunlight. Our technology will help 
reverse climate change as it can displace some traditional carbon inefficient 
technologies and will help the development of carbon sinks. In January 2018, 
Solar Water Plc received the prestigious Rushlight Water Treatment Award at a 
ceremony held at the Royal Geographical Society, London. This was in 
recognition of the project being a world-first for carbon neutral 


Source: NEOM