Large-Scale Building Integrated Wind Turbines in theBahrain World Trade Center Manama, Bahrain accommodates The Bahrain World TradeCenter (BWTC), which is a 240m (787ft) high twin commercial office towercomplex. The towers are the epicenter of a masterplan to renew a 5* hotel and ashopping mall, which exist on a very famous area of Manama, with view theArabian Gulf in the downtown central business site. The long established Arabian ”Wind Towers”influenced the form of the Bahrain World Trade Center buildings in the sensethat the buildings take advantage of the undistracted serene breeze from theGulf, giving a renewable source of energy for the new masterplan. The towers are famous for their tremendousarchitecture that imitates an ancient Arabian ”wind tower” design. However,the most important part that makes the BWTC so special and distinguishes fromthe others is its status as the first commercial building, which combines threelarge-scale wind turbines in its design. Additionally, the turbines are able toproduce an important part of the building’s total electricity required eachyear.
How the Project Came About Atkins’ Chief Architect, Shaun Killa, pushed the ideafor this modern design solution and the Client easily embraced the concept toshow to the world that Bahrain is open to options, which can decrease thedemand on fossil fuel energy and will push in a more sustainable direction,urban and building design in desert climates. The integration of large scale wind turbines in a buildingstructure is complex and needs to be taken seriously as the Client wishes tobenefit from this project with the knowledge and experience collected from thepeople working their and then create teams, which will operating in a globalmanner. As many architects around the world, so does theAtkins, crated team in the Middle East, which examines innovative designsolutions promoting sustainability and have explored the use of integrated windturbines on a number of previous projects. The Arabian Gulf with its mostimportant characteristic, sea breeze, the wind climate contributes to theexploitation of wind energy and let designers to move away from the oldtraditional solutions and think about the unidirectional wind turbine as achoice, which are suitable for the integration of large-scale buildings. Atkins made a research, which provides that thelarge-scale integration of wind turbines in projects mainly fails due to theextreme costs connected with the adjustment of the building’s design, and thedevelopment costs for special turbines which are also excessive. This projectseems to have its basis of design, in the use of conventional technologies andthe development of a built form, which would be pleasant to receive windturbines. The premium on this project, with the wind turbines included, wasless than 3.5% of the whole project’s value.
Atkins and a team full of world best technologists,with the advantage of a favorable wind climate and a design theory that keepslow turbine R&D / building costs, made a step further with the design andprovide the main issues of: • Producing technically viable solutions; • Balancing energy yield / benefit withinvestment 2. As a chief architect responsible for the designof the Bahrain World Trade Center, can you describe the challenges faced by youin designing this state-of-the-art structure? The existing Bahrain World Trade Center shows theprevious technological methods that set out new standards in sustainabledesign. It is really important to bear in mind that foranything new and innovative, you should expect obstacles along the way. This isthe reason why Rambøll and Atkins, during the construction and theestablishment of the wind turbines recognized and solved a lot of potential technicalissues. One of them was vibration, and they managed to solve this by puttingrubber bearings at the end of the bridges.
Another challenge that their global engineering teammanaged to deal with was the lifting of three wind turbines 68 tonnes each, andthree bridges 11 tonnes each. The cure for this was a 270m crane, which wasapplied between the towers to solve this problem. Nevertheless, after all the challenges we faced noneof them was big enough to be unable to solve it. Due to the great teamwork andsome very intelligent engineering, we managed to build up a project that is atrue success.