Appraisal of renewable energy resource suitability for sea water desalination in Oman using remote sensing technology

Y. A. Al-Mulla, M. Faizuddin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


There are 970 trillion kWh of energy fall on earth from the skies every day. The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are among the places with highest irradiation on earth. Oman receive Direct Normal Irradiation in range 1900kwh in Northern part and 2200 kwh coastal and southern region with 0% of annual irradiation deficit due to shadowing which gives potential to generate 4.1 Trillion watt hour of energy. These resources are however not fully exploited despite their recognized benefits. On other hand, the MENA region is one of the most water scarce regions in the world as a result of rapidly developing demands including recent urbanization and economic development in addition to climate change. A UN report indicate that by 2030 a one-capita share of fresh water in the Middle East will be less than 1000 cubic meters per year, a level considered by FAO to form a barrier, to a large extent, for social and economic development and environmental sustainability. Hence, alternative options for producing fresh water is crucially needed in these countries. One of the options that is being used since 1950's is desalination. Multistage Flash and Reverse Osmosis are the most common desalination techniques that are followed globally. However, constructing and operating such techniques are extremely energy and cost intensive. For example Oman will be spending $542.4 million every year on building and operating such desalination plants. Another serious environmental challenge resulting from using these techniques is brine production. In addition to fossil fuel Oman also have potential renewable energy resources like Concentrated Solar Power (CSP), Wind Power, Solar Energy for photo voltaic energy and little Biomass. This article addresses the advantages of use of remote sensing technology in finding suitable sites for the renewable energy resources based desalination plants in Oman.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2017 ASABE Annual International Meeting
PublisherAmerican Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event2017 ASABE Annual International Meeting - Spokane, United States
Duration: Jul 16 2017Jul 19 2017


Other2017 ASABE Annual International Meeting
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • Climate change
  • Desalination
  • Gis
  • MENA region
  • Oman
  • Remote sensing
  • Renewable energy
  • Water scarcity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Agronomy and Crop Science


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