Located in Al Dhafra region of Abu Dhabi, Shams was the largest renewable energy project in operation in the Middle East when launched in 2013. It occupies 2.5 square kilometres and has a capacity of 100 megawatts. The solar field has 768 parabolic trough collectors to generate clean, renewable electricity.

Concentrated solar power generates electricity from the heat of the sun rather than sunlight, as is the case with solar photovoltaic technology. Parabolic trough systems use solar thermal collectors in the form of parabolic mirrors, with a central tube to concentrate the heat from direct solar irradiation. The heat in turn produces steam to drive a conventional turbine, ultimately generating electricity.

Shams directly contributes toward Abu Dhabi’s target of 30 percent power-generation capacity via clean energy by the year 2030. The plant also is helping the United Arab Emirates diversify its energy mix and reduce the country’s carbon footprint. The plant displaces about 175,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, which is equivalent to planting 1.5 million trees or removing 15,000 cars from Abu Dhabi’s roads.

Shams is one of several projects in Masdar’s domestic portfolio. For more information, visit: www.shamspower.ae.

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Project Info

Technologies Used

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Concentrated Solar Power

Parabolic Trough Tech


Abu Dhabi, UAE

Project Completion Year





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Quick Facts

  • Emission reductions: 175,000 tonnes annually

  • Equipment: 768 parabolic trough collectors

  • Facility area: 2.5 square kilometres

  • Installed capacity: 100 megawatts

  • Operational date: March 17, 2013

  • Powers more than 20,000 UAE homes