HOT|COOL NO.2/2016 - "District cooling in the Middle East"


COWI Energy is responsible for the concept design, and detailed design of pipes, pipe support for the tunnel walls, pipe insulation, secondary pump units, hydraulic calculations and water hammer analyses, specification and dimensioning of the mechanical equipment, instrumentation and preparation of control philosophy, 2D drawings and 3D. Deadline for the district cooling design was end February 2016, and the COWI team managed to turn in most of the work a month before planed in an already tight time schedule. Therefore, the entrepreneur could start buying the required long lead items parts and material earlier than planned. FACTS: 21 Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs) and 27,000 people from all over the world are working full speed to finish off 113 kilometers metro tunnels and 74 stations in Doha. The metro system will consist of 4 metro lines. Qatar's overall objective is to improve the existing public transpor infrastructure and reduce urban congestion by 2030.

It has taken many unique and creative solutions to make it work, but fortunately we have an advantage, because of our specialists both within tunnel construction, pipe design and district cooling design. One of the creative solutions has been to customize the tunnel’s pipe supports and especially the tunnel’s pipe anchoring points for the tunnel concrete walls. At the same time, COWI has focused a lot on constructing these items from standard component to reduce cost, delivery time and installation time for our client. With very limited space in the tunnels and with non-negligible forces and milions of fatigue impacts in the lifetime from the driving metro trains, the tunnel pipe supports and anchoring points, the design has been very challenging. In order to ensure and verify these designs, COWI has performed detailed stress analysis of supports, anchoring points and anchoring plates for the curving tunnel walls, CFD study of the metro train wind piston effects and FEM studies of the steel constructions. The cooling to the district cooling system is delivered by an independent district cooling company, in means of chilled water through large heat exchangers at three locations on the RLNU. The district cooling system is altogether almost 25 MW to satisfy punctual demand up to 9 MW. In Doha, the world’s largest detached chiller plant is located, with a capacity of approx 450 MW cooling. However, more chiller plants and district cooling networks will be developed and constructed in Doha to supply cooling for the metro, new city areas, new residential areas, new office high risers etc. which are under construction.

For further information please contact:

COWI Att.: Niels Vilstrup Parallelvej 2 2800 Kongens Lyngby Denmark

Phone: +45 56 40 00 00 Qatar: +974 66 02 12 67 Email:

Part of the COWI district cooling design team in a metro station in the midst of being built. From left Jesper Peter Daal, Morten Frydenlund and Niels Vilstrup


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