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Ras Bufontas Free Zone achieves sustainability certification under GSAS framework

Ras Bufontas Free Zone has achieved green building certification under the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS)

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Sustainability Pulse Volume 2 Issue 2



In hot climates, it is desirable to reduce the ambient air temperature in order to improve comfort levels; however in hot and humid climates (as in the Gulf Region), removal of moisture from the air (dehumidification) is almost as important as cooling. Conventional air conditioning systems address these issues by cooling air below its dew point such that water vapour condenses on a cooling coil, thus removing moisture from the air. The dehumidified air, in many cases, is then reheated to the desired temperature. QCOOL, an innovative smart patented air conditioning system by Gulf Organisation For Research & Development (GORD), is a fully integrated and controlled ventilating and air conditioning system that provides superefficient, cost-effective, and sustainable fresh air cooling for open or enclosed spaces in moderate, hot or humid climates. Based on the application, QCOOL consists of a single or multi stages that can dehumidify and cool the air to the required comfort level. The system utilizes recycled water and absorbent materials which is extracted from rejected desalination brine. The environmentally friendly desiccant, GORD@DES, has a high affinity for water and capable of absorbing water vapour from their immediate vicinity.


The case study unit is installed and tested at GORD’s Technohub which is located in Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP). During the tested period, the system has shown up to 50% reduction in energy consumption compared to conventional systems. QCOOL is an energy efficient cooling system that can shrink clients’ carbon footprints in a cost effective manner.

The figures below compare the performance of a typical fresh air handling unit (FAHU) with and without heat recovery gainst QCOOL. As shown in the case study, QCOOL reduces the coil load dramatically in addition, it flattens the cooling load ence reduces the peak load. Furthermore, QCOOL utilizes the exhaust to cool the condenser, as a result the electrical COP is improved. Based on the application, QCOOL models consist of a single or multi stages that can dehumidify and cool the air to he required comfort level. QCOOL can be fully driven by waste heat and renewables.


  • Enclosed spaces such residential, commercial and other building typologies.
  • Open spaces such as football stadia, walkways, souks, parks and many others.
  • Healthy and efficient fresh-air to fresh-air heat exchange where the use of return air heat recovery is prohibited such as hospitals, health centres, laboratories, etc.
  • Greenhouses for leisure spaces or crop production is another potential application. The latter would reduce food imports and strengthen national and regional food security.

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