Positive Impact (sustainable)
+ Almeisan Tower
The Land Art Generator Initiative
Ibn Al Haytham Pavilion
The Almeisan tower works at the top as a small (600KW) solar power tower. It generates its own energy and the energy required to run the rest of Za’abeel park. 224 large heliostatic polished mirrors track the sun’s position in the sky and reflect a concentrated beam of light to a central collector where a furnace containing liquid sodium is heated to extremely high temperatures to run a steam turbine. By placing the mirror array at 100 meters above grade, it will make the concentrated beams of light visible from a great distance as an emblem of the future of energy generation. In addition to actively creating energy from the sun, the building incorporates eight wind piers for passive cooling of the podium. The eight 5m wide concrete structural piers (hollow in section) draw hot air from the podium level to carefully placed openings 110 meters above the ground where the wind and the cooler air create a strong chimney effect.
The living walls and roof of the podium level are a visual extension of the Za’abeel park landscape and another integrated system of passive cooling for the podium level. The energy that would be absorbed into the roof is instead harnessed by the plants and the 1.5 meter soil bed acts as a massive heat sink for modulating the diurnal temperature variations of the desert, much as thick mud walls would do in traditional indigenous architecture.