The flower shaped solar panel after it was unveiled in front of Dubai Municipality headquarters in Deira on Wednesday. Image Credit: Pankaj Sharma/Gulf News

Dubai: A flower-shaped solar power generator that re-orients itself to catch the sun’s rays through the day was unveiled in front of Dubai Municipality headquarters on Wednesday.

Hussain Nasser Lootah, director-general of the municipality, unveiled the UAE’s first ‘smartflower’ on Baniyas Road.

The solar power generating ‘flower’, a first of its kind initiative in the region, was launched in the presence of Ahmad Bin Bayat, vice-chairman and managing director of Dubai Holding, as well as municipality officials.

The smartflower, developed by an Austrian firm, is considered to be a ground-breaking and innovative solar panel with built-in sensors that allow it to automatically track the rays of sunlight and re-orient itself accordingly. This results in a much higher efficiency of up to 23 per cent, as well as 60 per cent self-utilisation as compared to traditional rooftop solar systems.

It also has a weather adapting mechanism in which a passive ventilation system has been integrated in the design to ensure optimum efficiency during high temperatures of the UAE.

Lootah said the smartflower initiative is in line with ideas of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, who has said that “through greater investment and innovation in a green economy, the country will achieve its objective to be the gold standard for sustainability worldwide.”

Shaikh Mohammad had said “whoever does not think of energy is not thinking about the future” while launching the Emirates Energy Strategy 2050, aimed at enhancing the efficiency of consumption by 40 per cent, raising the contribution of clean energy to 50 per cent and savings worth Dh700 billion by 2050.

Lootah said the smartflower is also an initiative in line with the municipality’s vision of developing a happy and sustainable city. He highlighted the municipality’s commitment to innovation and implementation of creative ideas in line with Dubai government’s vision of becoming the world’s most innovative and sustainable city.

Khalid Sharif Al Awadhi, assistant director-general for Environment, Health and Safety Control Sector said the smartflower is one of several initiatives launched by the Applied Sustainability and Renewable Energy Department of Dubai Municipality in 2017. It also includes the launching of Dubai Lamp, the “world’s most efficient commercially-available LED lamp”, which is expected to reduce energy consumption by 90 per cent.