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29 February 2024

BWTC's wind turbines enter commercial development

Bahrain World Trade Centre. (SUPPLIED)

By Staff Writer

The Bahrain World Trade Centre (BWTC) has announced the official certification of the building's wind turbines by Bahrain's Electricity Distribution Directorate (EDD).

The three 29-metre diameter turbines are now set to auto-mode, meaning they are supplying power to the office towers.

The turbines were inaugurated April last year. Since then they have been undergoing daily safety and regulatory testing, and were commissioned to mark Bahrain's National Day in December 2008.

The BWTC's turbines are the first in the world to be integrated into a large scale commercial development, and are predicted to provide 11 per cent to 15 per cent of the power needed to operate the offices of the 50-storey twin towers.

Peter Longstaff, Senior Project Manager at Atkins (Architectural Designers and Engineers of BWTC) said: "The official certification from the EDD means that the turbines are now fully operational and are supplying power to the development set to auto-mode. In order for the turbines to work there are certain criteria that need to be met. Namely, the correct balanced wind speed falling between four and 19 m/sec flowing from the Northeast or Northwest direction.

"For the purpose of understanding power supply, the twin towers can be categorised into three horizontal levels with each floor level having a direct alignment to the corresponding turbine. It is worth mentioning here that the three turbines are running at variable speeds that is due to changeable wind speeds at each location."

He said: "Taking all of these technical elements into consideration and keeping in mind the building cleaning and maintenance requirements, we envisage that the turbines may run, on average, about 50 per cent of the time."

Bob Addison, Country Manager of DTZ (BWTC's Managing and Leasing Agents), said: "By mid-2009, we expect tenants to move in and operating in the office towers. BWTC is a landmark development in terms of sustainable architecture, and we should be proud of Bahrain being the location for the world's first wind turbines in a commercial development."

The BWTC was named Best Tall Building in the Middle East and Africa region for 2008 by architecture's leading body dedicated to the field of tall buildings, The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH), and is designed and engineered by Atkins.