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Ras Al Khair Seawater Cooling System

A system for pumping and piping 475 mgd of seawater across a large site notorious for blowing sand and excessive heat

Ras Al Khair, Saudi Arabia

The Saudi Arabian government is creating a new 30,000 acre (120 square kilometers) industrial city for mineral and metal processing at Ras Al Khair in their Eastern Province. Stantec’s expertise was critical to the development of the citywide seawater cooling system needed by these large industries. Over a fast track 14 month period, we designed a comprehensive system for pumping and piping 475 millions of gallons per day (1,800 million liters) of seawater across a large site in a desert environment notorious for blowing sand and excessive heat.

The scale of the project is staggering. Seven pumps each with 2,500 kilowatt medium voltage motors draw seawater from a new intake and pump it over 28 miles (45 kilometers) across the city. Pipes with diameters up to 11 feet (3,300 millimeters) use specialized fiber reinforcement due to the corrosive nature of the seawater and desert soils. An open channel 65 feet (20 meters) wide by five miles (eight kilometers) long is used to return the seawater back to the gulf. Up to 450 pounds per day (200 kilograms) of chlorine is produced onsite from the seawater and used to limit marine growth in the system. More than 75 miles (120 kilometers) of fiber optic network is used for communication and control

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