Saturday, November 1, 2008

Norman Disney & Young to work on Nakheel Harbour & Tower

Leading engineering firm Norman Disney & Young (NDY) is expanding its global influence with the launch of its Dubai office and the announcement that it will work on the landmark Nakheel Harbour & Tower project in Dubai.

NDY will provide mechanical, electrical, fire and hydraulic services for the kilometre-high Tower, plans for which were unveiled this month. The Nakheel Tower will have more than 200 floors, 150 lifts and enough facilities that residents need never leave the building. It will also lead the way in sustainable design.

The Nakheel Tower is NDY's biggest project to date, and the firm will provide services to an approximate 30-40% of the overall project value, including hydraulics, air conditioning, fire protection and evacuation systems.

In order to meet the task ahead, NDY has opened an office in Dubai. With ten staff already in place, it plans to double this number by the end of 2008, and continue recruiting into next year.

The sheer scale of the project will create a range of different and new challenges that NDY will have to mitigate, including:

- Temperature - the Tower experiences five different climactic conditions and, as a result, there are design considerations at each level. One such consideration is known as a 'reverse stack effect'. This will cause high pressure differences between inside the building and outside which will require careful management to prevent such problems as doors being very difficult to open, lift doors jamming and high air loss from air conditioned spaces.

- All water systems will require pumping in stages because pressure requirement exceeds the pressure rating of equipment and pipework. In the case of chilled water, the number of stages which can be used is limited by the temperature rise as the water passes though the heat exchangers between each pressure stage.

- Electrical systems - the project has the power requirements equivalent to those of a small city, necessitating substations throughout the Tower. Back up power supplies will also be crucial because in the case of fire the Tower's 156 lifts will be essential for evacuation.

- Environmental considerations - these will include an on-site black water treatment plant, providing the equivalent of 10 Olympic-sized swimming pools of recycled water per day. This water will be used for irrigation within the overall development.

Dennis O'Brien, NDY director, said:

'The Nakheel Tower represents one of the most groundbreaking construction and infrastructure projects in the world to date, and we relish the opportunity to be involved. Every project raises fresh challenges but none more so than this one. NDY is committed to finding the most effective solution for each challenge.'

'As a business, this project also presents the opportunity for NDY to grow into the Middle East, with the launch of our new office in this expanding market strengthening the firm's international position,' O'Brien added.

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