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BURJ AL-TAQA: Zero-Energy Tower for the Middle East
Posted By Ali Kriscenski On October 18, 2007 @ 9:04 am In Architecture,Renewable Energy | 22 Comments
The recent building boom in the Middle East has given rise to some of the world’s most extravagant  and innovative  buildings. The latest proposed tower to sprout up among the ever-changing skyline is the Burj Al-Taqa Energy Tower  for the Middle East. Designed by Eckhard Gerber  and cutting a 322 meter high silhouette, this commercial high rise will produce zero emissions and use sun, wind and water to create all of its own energy.
This state-of-the-art tower design comes from German architect Eckhard Gerber  who envisions final builds in Riyadh, Dubai and Bahrain. Stuttgart-based engineering firm DS-Plan  has calculated the building’s technical capabilities.
The 68-story structure will use natural air conditioning based on Iranian wind towers  which draws wind in and down to cool interiors. Gerber’s cylindrical design uses this principal to ventilate the tower. A central atrium will provide fresh air inflow. The incoming air will be pre-cooled with seawater, dispersed throughout the building and ventilated through a double-skin glass façade. Tubing throughout the ceilings will run cool water for additional radiant thermal comfort.
Solar gain control is dependent on a new type of vacuum glazing that is still in development but expected to be over 60% more efficient than current technology. A rotating solar shield covering one sixth of the building circumference will provide shade at the highest incidences and use an integrated photovoltaic array to capture the sun’s energy for electricity.
And yes, that is a wind turbine on top. The Darrieus-type rotor, together with two more roof-mounted photovoltaic arrays and a floating array in the nearby sea, will equip the Burj Al-Taqa to meet its energy needs. Any excess electricity will applied to generating more energy – extracting hydrogen from seawater for fuel cells.
Gerber’s ambitious projections for the Burj Al-Taqa depend on unproven techniques and untested materials. However, if the Energy Tower for the Middle East lives up to expectations, it will require 60 percent less energy than comparable buildings, produce no CO2 emissions and, from a lofty height at number 22 on the list of the world’s tallest buildings, can boast complete independence from non-renewable energy.
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URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/burj-al-taqa-energy-tower-for-the-middle-east/
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://www.inhabitat.com/2007/10/18/burj-al-taqa-energy-tower-for-the-middle-east/
 extravagant: http://www.inhabitat.com/2006/12/14/new-dubai-tower-clocks-the-sun/
 innovative: http://www.inhabitat.com/2007/05/01/the-lighthouse-dubais-1st-low-carbon-commercial-tower/
 Burj Al-Taqa Energy Tower: http://www.gerberarchitekten.de/frameset.htm
 Eckhard Gerber: http://www.gerberarchitekten.de
 DS-Plan: http://www.ds-plan.com/english/DS-Plan.htm
 Iranian wind towers: http://www.cais-soas.com/CAIS/Architecture/wind.htm
 + Burj Al-Taqa at Der Spiegel: http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,481938,00.html
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