Hybrid desalination plant to answer seasonal variations in energy consumption
Fujairah Asia Power Company – FAPCO
Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity authority (ADWEA as majority shareholder, International Power Plc., Marubeni Corp.)
The client’s needs
Fujairah is one of the 7 Emirates, located on the east coast of the United Arab Emirates on the Gulf of Oman. The country is experiencing high demographic growth resulting in the constant rise in electricity and drinking water demand. Desalination was the best option to meet the population’s water growing needs and boost the region’s development potential.
Veolia Water Technologies was chosen to design and build the new Fujairah II desalination plant located in Qidfa.
To deal with the variation of the power demand ,especially during summer due to the use of air-conditionning, the innovative hybrid MED-RO system was the most energy efficient solution for the desalination process.
Indeed, combined with a 2,000 MW power plant built by Alstom, the Fujairah desalination plant is the first to associate the reverse osmosis and the Multiple Effect Distillation (MED) technologies :
- The MED system is the first section of the plant and the largest with 12 units
- The RO plant is th second part of the plant. The Spidflow rapid DAF is used as pretreatment step prior to the RO membranes to prevent any stop in case of red tide (algae blooms).
This hybrid solution optimizes the use of the electricity produced by the power plant. In the summer consumption peak, the thermal power plant operares at full capacity, providing a maximum amount of vapor which is used to distill seawater. In the winter, the RO desalination is favored as it only consumes electrical energy, which is readily available at that time of the year.
The desalination plant has also a sludge treatment system to avoid wastewater and sludge disposal into the sea.
The Fujairah desalination plant as a total treatment capacity of 591,000 m3/day : 455,000 m3/day for the MED part and 136,000 m3/day for the RO one. This Hybrid technology provides flexibility to adapt the water production and the energy consumption to the seasonal energy constraints.