DEWA encourages using the latest technologies to create sustainable and smart homes


The Global Competition for Universities to Design Solar-Based Homes (Solar Decathlon – Middle East), organized by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council, contributes to encouraging investment in disruptive technologies Such as artificial intelligence, 3D printing and drones, to build smart and sustainable homes, which enhances the position of the UAE, an important platform for innovators and creators from all over the world, and supports the authority’s efforts to consolidate innovation in sustainability.
Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Managing Director and CEO of the authority, said that the second edition of the competition attracted innovative projects that consolidate the culture of sustainability in the UAE and Dubai, and contribute to encouraging the adoption of a sustainable lifestyle by stimulating the design, construction and operation of homes based on solar energy. It is efficient in terms of cost and energy consumption, with an emphasis on preserving the environment and taking into account the climatic conditions of the region.
One of the most prominent examples of projects participating in the competition, which relies on the latest technologies, is the project presented by the “Sharjah” team from the University of Sharjah, which offers a sustainable home that focuses on enhancing cooperation between man and machine, to perform daily tasks and enhance the atmosphere of comfort in the home. It helps develop industrial, social and environmental skills in the lives of its residents, as it includes spaces dedicated to innovative virtual and physical workshops. It also includes a digital fabrication laboratory with a set of flexible computer-controlled tools to produce the needs of the home and its occupants using 3D modeling or computer-aided design. The house is an awareness program that raises the residents’ awareness of energy and sustainability, in terms of enabling them to effectively manage the energy systems inside the house themselves, to conserve energy and resources. The design of the building is based on the principle of “a box within a box”, where the outer layer of the house provides protection from external weather factors to raise the efficiency of energy conservation, and also attracts the largest possible amount of sunlight to generate electricity using solar energy, while the inner layer works to maintain a moderate temperature .
The house offers ample scope for recycling and sorting of cooking waste, treatment and reuse of 100% of the wastewater, and other resources. Various parts of it can also be turned into a design studio or virtual reality station for further testing, before the 3rd printing and manufacturing phase begins.
Dr. Muammar Beltayeb, Vice Rector for Scientific Research and Graduate Studies, said: “The competition provides an exceptional opportunity for the university team, as it allows students to take on a real international challenge, in the midst of real conditions, and gives them the opportunity to learn about the industrial sector. The University of Sharjah presented a project that combines sustainability and innovation, aimed at stimulating environmental awareness among future professionals, and aims to prepare a “green” generation capable of facing the upcoming global challenges.
It is noteworthy that the authority organized the first session of the competition in 2018, for the first time in the Middle East and Africa.


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