New villa is sunny side up

Self-suf­fi­cient home is a model for fu­ture

7 Days in Dubai - - NEWS - By Shab­nam Bashiri @Shab­namBashiri

A self-suf­fi­cient home that is in­de­pen­dent of the elec­tric­ity grid has been un­veiled in what ex­perts say could be the way for­ward for liv­ing in the fu­ture.

Tech­ni­cians from the Mo­hammed bin Rashid Space Cen­tre have been work­ing on the pro­to­type in Al Khawa­neej as part of ef­forts to cut down on the amount of en­ergy used in homes.

The UAE has con­sis­tently had one of the high­est en­ergy uses per capita, in part due to the preva­lence of air con­di­tion­ing.

In ad­di­tion to a large bank of so­lar pan­els on the roof, which is al­ready be­ing used on homes and com­mer­cial busi­nesses, the fo­cus is on en­sur­ing heat and dust do not en­ter.

Triple-glazed win­dows re­flect sun­light and kryp­ton gas in­side en­hances the ef­fec­tive­ness of the in­su­la­tion.

Mois­ture gen­er­ated from the AC cool­ing sys­tems – a sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenge in a hu­mid cli­mate – is fil­tered to pro­duce up to 200 litres of water per day. The AC unit also keeps a con­stant tem­per­a­ture of 22C to 25C at all times.

Dr Ali Sha­heen, Di­rec­tor of the Sus­tain­able En­ergy Pro­gramme, said: “Nor­mally houses gen­er­ate 120,000 to 140,000 kilo­watts of en­ergy per day, de­pend­ing on the po­si­tion of the sun. But the smart home only gen­er­ates an av­er­age of 30,000 to 40,000 kilo­watts of en­ergy per day.

“We are plan­ning to con­duct stud­ies on pro­vid­ing the elec­tric­ity grid with sur­plus en­ergy stor­age in or­der to feed back ex­cess en­ergy into the grid.”

With in­vest­ments from gov­ern­ment and pri­vate firms in the real es­tate sec­tor, Sha­heen said the smart homes are ex­pected to be made avail­able in the mar­ket within five years.

Huge so­lar pan­els gen­er­ate enough elec­tric­ity to al­low the home to be sep­a­rate to the grid. Thick in­su­la­tion also keeps cool air in.

Triple-glazed win­dows re­flect heat and light and con­tain kryp­ton gas to en­hance

in­su­la­tion

The state-of-the-art AC sys­tem pro­duces fil­tered air with lit­tle waste

Ex­cess mois­ture from the cool­ing sys­tem be­comes us­able water

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