Zayed Future Energy Prize Jury Inaugurates Wind Tower at Abu Dhabi's Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School
Abu Dhabi-UAE: 19 October, 2014
Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School, the 2013 winner of the Zayed Future Energy Prize, has launched a state-of-the-art wind tower that will provide sustainable cooling for its classrooms. The project, which was developed in partnership with the University of Leeds Physics Group, was funded through the US$100,000 prize the school was awarded for the Global High Schools, Asia category.
The Global High Schools prize category was introduced by the Zayed Future Energy Prize in 2012 as part of the UAE's commitment to the UN Secretary General's 'Sustainable Energy for All' initiative, which seeks to double renewable energy, enhance energy efficiency and ensure universal clean energy access by 2030. Since its establishment in 2012, nine schools have been awarded and fifteen have been identified internationally for the upcoming 2015 awards.
His Excellency Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, president of the Republic of Iceland, said, "Renewable energy has become a crucial part of the global energy picture. To meet energy demands sustainably and efficiently, we must inspire and support the next generation to play an active role in the delivery of innovative renewable energy technologies. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia was the first of a new generation to be championed by the Global High Schools category, as young pioneers for renewable energy. Today we have returned to celebrate their success as they deliver a project which reflects the perfect balance of environmental and cultural sustainability."
Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School is the first UAE-based entity to receive the Zayed Future Energy Prize and the first school to win in the Global High Schools category for the Asia region. The school was awarded for its proposal to reduce grid reliance and become carbon neutral through leveraging sustainable cooling methods and grid-type smart photo-voltaic systems. The installation of the new wind tower completes the final step in the proposal to improve cooling throughout the school by integrating traditional Arab building methods.
His Excellency Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, director general of the Zayed Future Energy Prize, said, "We live in a time of great opportunity where nations and leaders are more unified than ever before on the subject of clean energy. Our wise leadership has set an outstanding example, forging international collaborations on renewable energy projects. Their efforts are projected to yield prosperity for the nation for years to come. These students have reflected that vision, by reaching across the world to forge partnerships with other international institutions and organisations, in an effort to meet their energy demands.
"We commend Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School for setting the tone for schools across the nation and the world to follow. The Zayed Future Energy Prize has laid a foundation for these students by embedding lifelong values of sustainability. When we look at what they have achieved here, we know this is only the beginning," added Dr. Al Jaber.
Following the installation of a smart solar system on the building's rooftop in June 2013, the school pursued a partnership with the University of Leeds Physics Group in order to complete its proposal for a wind tower. Led by Dr. Ben Richard Hughes, associate professor of Building Physics, School of Civil Engineering at the University of Leeds, the team's task force worked with the school in Abu Dhabi to investigate the school's structure and collect data for simulation and wind tunnel modelling in Leeds.
Dr. Ben Richard Hughes said, "I have been inspired by traditional architecture for my research in recent years as I spent two years living and working in the UAE. This interest helped me focus on re-energising the use of traditional wind towers in the region to provide sustainable building developers with technologies that complement the region's heritage rather than hinder it."
In the design process, the University of Leeds Physics Group studied classic Emirati architecture as well as wind tower elements popularised in the region. The one metre by one metre wind tower is constructed from sheet metal and works on the principle of pressure differentials - whereby warm air rises, creating a low pressure in the receiving room, which then draws in the fresh air. Cooling devices are integrated into the wind tower channel to reduce the air temperature, ensuring minimum restriction in the air flow stream and maximum heat transfer. The school's wind tower is also fitted with adjustable volume control dampers to control the delivery rate of outside air. The technology has been adapted to the climatic challenges of the UAE, significantly reducing energy consumption. Additionally, the use of natural air for ventilating occupied spaces helps reduce or eliminate health-related complaints usually associated with domestic air conditioning.
The study conducted by the University of Leeds has revealed that the wind tower is capable of reducing the supply temperature by up to 12 degrees within the simulated class room model.
The first device has been officially patented by the University of Leeds and will be rolled out across the UAE to potential clients in early 2015, using the university's spin-out company Free Running Buildings.
To date, the Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School has implemented several sustainability measures including the installation of energy saving light bulbs. The effort has helped cut the school's electricity consumption by 15 per cent, earning it additional awards and certificates from the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi.
Mr. Mir Anisul Hasan, principal of the Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School, said, "The legacy of our founding father Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan remains strong in the vision and identity of our students who view sustainability as a foundation for life. As educators, it is our responsibility to nurture and harness their desire to see sustainability shape their future and the future of the community. The Zayed Future Energy Prize has enabled us to do this by realising renewable energy in our school."
To commemorate the occasion, an official inauguration ceremony was held for the wind tower at the Abu Dhabi-based school, in the presence of the Chair of the Zayed Future Energy Prize Jury, His Excellency Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, president of the Republic of Iceland, and His Excellency Muhammad Imran, Bangladesh Ambassador to the UAE.
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About the Zayed Future Energy Prize:
The Zayed Future Energy Prize embodies the vision of the late founding father of the UAE, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who laid the foundation for renewable energy, social and environmental sustainability as part of his legacy in the economic development of the UAE. The Prize is a US$4 million annual award, managed by Masdar, on behalf of the Abu Dhabi government and seeks to award achievements and innovation in the fields of renewable energy and sustainability, as well as to educate and inspire future generations.
About the University of Leeds:
The Faculty of Engineering is one of the largest engineering groupings in the UK having in excess of 700 staff, 3,000 students and an annual turnover of around £60m. The Faculty is currently ranked 7th in the UK for the quality of its research according to the latest Government Research Assessment Exercise, with 75% of the Faculty's research rated as internationally excellent or world leading.
Their range and scope of research covers all of the major engineering disciplines, including cross cutting themes such as energy, materials, medical engineering and artificial intelligence, with theoretical, experimental and modelling work underpinning all areas. For more information: www.engineering.leeds.ac.uk
About the Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia school
Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School, is an educational institute providing academic education to Bangladesh and international students in Abu Dhabi, UAE, for secondary and higher secondary education. Established in 1980, the school actively participates in the sustainable schools Initiative and other programmes organised by the Environment Agency, Abu Dhabi.
The school was awarded with the 2013 Global High Schools Asia award by the Zayed Future Energy Prize. The schools award winning proposal sought to become energy efficient by installing solar PV panels, LED lights and a wind tower inspired by the traditional cooling methods of the Middle East. For more information: www.skbzbdschool.com/
© Press Release 2014