The majority of large-scale production companies fall into the independent water and power producers (IWPPs) category. They are joint ventures between a foreign partner and a government partner, usually on a 40 percent/ 60 percent equity allocation basis, respectively.
Drinking water is produced using a mixture of plant technologies as outlined below:
- multi stage flash (MSF) desalination consists of flashing a portion of the sea water into steam in multiple stages. Basically sea water is heated before it gets admitted into a chamber or stage with pressure less than the heated sea water. The sudden introduction of this water into a lower pressure “stage” causes it to boil so rapidly as to flash into steam. The remaining water will be sent through a series of additional stages, each possessing a lower ambient pressure than the previous “stage”. The steam is condensed into pure water;
- multi effect desalination (MED). Vapours from the first evaporator condense in the second and their heat of condensation serve to boil the sea water in the second evaporator. In plainer terms, the second condenser acts as a condenser for the vapours of the first which in turn acts as a heater for the water in that evaporator. Each evaporator in the series is called an “effect”; and
- reverse osmosis (RO) is a separation process that uses pressure to force water (sea water) through a membrane that retains the sea salt on one side and allows the pure water to pass to the other side. Because no heating or phase changes are needed, energy requirements are low in comparison to other desalination processes.
Independent water and power producers (IWPPs) are major players in the Abu Dhabi water and electricity sector and as of ..
Independent water and power producers (IWPPs) are major players in the Abu Dhabi water and electricity sector and as of 2013 account for nearly all of the total generation and desalination capacity in the sector.