Layers of Dubai / Mekano

Layers of Dubai / Mekano
Courtesy of Mekano

Karim Elnabawy, co founder of Mekano based in Alex, Egypt, has shared with us his design submission for the Land Art Generator Initiative. The design, located near the Ras al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary of Dubai looks at creating a layered energy system that creatively harnesses available resources as well as becoming an attraction to the landscape. Additional images and architects description after the break.


Courtesy of Mekano

Design will save the world. We are running out of Time to save our planet, our sources of Energy are nearly depleted, Global Warming problem is the most threat that can destroy the whole planet, The Climate is deeply Affected by the fossil fuels. Unfortunately, Human been are the cause of all those problems and we who should solve all of those for a better future to the upcoming generation.


Layers of Dubai Feel the Nature, Love the nature, it will never fail you, in order to solve those problems – by the people  -they must first love their nature and know how it’s important for the living, life and the future. The art and inspiration must come out from the natural powers itself, with some fancy windscape and sunscape shows all around the form, and by making the nature deal directly with the form and control it.The idea of making the people knows the real use of the sun , wind , water , and green spaces, to make them look from another perspective to the powers of nature that will save the planet, they will surely will take care of it, and protect it at all costs. To have a generation capable of saving the World, open-minded people that know what they can do.


Courtesy of Mekano

Dubai and UAE has a unique character from the way they become one of the greatest economic powers in the world, starting from dust to the top. The main design concept is based on the Dubai layers and the harmony of  all those , land, earth and nature. the layers of Dubai in the past to this moment that contained a sandy land , plants , sky, sun , winds , buildings ending up high with skyscrapers


The 2 towers will play an important role in Attracting people to the site with their strange look and high towering that can be seen from any part of the city , each one is 140 m high,  making 2 towers is better than making 1 huge mass that blocks the view and this could have harmed the skylines of Dubai .  With this steel lines on it, it can inspire the attendance with its visual effects in night, the movement, and the sky view. The contour lines defers from space to another with wide heights in the site , the form is shaped like that in order to fit well in the site and it’s Adjacent to the contour lines that is higher than 5 meters. The form lines on site were inspired by the desert sands, the form is like been risen out of the sands and it really suits the whole environment with the lagoons beside it, they look really similar in curves case.-the form looks fluid in terms of shaping, this can be a great advantage for a land art generator initiative because it can now fit on any other site in the future.


Performance: With free resources all around Dubai , the land art generator will distribute clean energy all over the city. Inspiration: integrating science technologies with some new artistic shapes and forms to inspire the viewers and make the art from science and natural powers. Activation: to activate and operate the sustainable technology in accordance with the functional needs of the form and the environment, during all the year.


Courtesy of Mekano

A land art generator needs lots of energy in order to support the city, on a huge site, it needs lots of sustainable techniques in order to take full advantage of wind and sun and not relying on only one power generation method, which can get the viewers bored with the art itself. The idea is to integrate the sun techniques with the wind in order to make the required power from sun and wind all over the year. Taking full advantage of the sun and tiring the winds until it leave the building.


A new era of Solar Chimney. With 2 towers instead of only 1, the solar chimney was designed to take full advantage of hot air and the solar radiation there, as it works on the famous three principles:1-The use of the sun’s radiation to heat a large body of air – the collection area is the main form that the towers comes out of it – , greenhouse effect lets light in, – the greenhouse is made by the plants already in site – ,direct and diffuse, but does not let heat out. The base form is made from titanium to capture heat.2-Hot air rises through the chimney.3-Movement of air as energy source to drive large turbines to generate electricity


Courtesy of Mekano

At Daylight the roof opens up its glass tiles to let in the air, and open it’s sides, the power of the sun heats the roof of the model which has high thermal storage then the air is heated and makes it to reach the towers green house, and then it passes by a wind generators to generate electricity.

At Night The roof close its tiles to maintain the high temperature of the wind , and again it moves rapidly towards the tower and passes by the wind generators which generates electricity.

Electric Carbon Shafts After the air rises on both chimneys , a wind shafts were considered inside and outside of the chimney , the inside air will move the shafts from inside , to be moved outside too ,with this wind strikes , the shafts which were made out of carbon, will generate electricity by movement of the electrons and to create  a lively inspired tower.

Wind Turbines The wind turns the wings of the generator, which spin the fan, which connects to a generator and makes electricity.-wind generators are easy integrated with the form like the other natural elements in site.-The wind generator is covered with a parametric structure that protects the birds in this area from being shattered by the shafts.

Courtesy of Mekano

Photovoltaic cells Photovoltaic (PV) cells are made of silicon semiconductors similar to those used in computer chips. When sunlight hits these materials, it knocks electrons loose from their atoms, which flow through the material to produce electricity. Photovoltaic cells were placed on top of the form to  receive most of sun rays.

Wind waves Inspired from water waves , the same techniques were used to generate power from waves, but not water waves, it’s Wind, hits the elements between the 2 towers, which makes the inner circular cylinder spins fast, and generate electricity.

Piezoelectric While the Piezoelectric system is  a self  sustainable energy system embedded  into the interior spaces that recycles and reuses the evanescent nature of sound  and vibrational energy collected from the numerous passing during the border  crossing as a cast-off form of energy.

Power roof An outer zinc-titanium membrane shell on the form will feature one layer covered by solar photovoltaic panels, as well as a second translucent layer that lets in 50% of all light while preventing water from hitting the ground.


Courtesy of Mekano

Windscape A lively tower , shafts are moving with no roles, only with wind control, get inspired from the wind . The wind shafts were inspired from the nature it self that is already there, the look of the green  plants , coming out of the lands.

Natural landscape Natural plants already in site will make art from  it self, viewing stages where made  to show the integration of sun rays hitting the plants and the soil to inspire the visitors with the naturally made landscape.

Sunscape An interior spaces where made in the outer line of the form for the public , making small circular holes in the roof that allow the sun to get inside with a focusing layer on the roof, allowing only the light and forcing out temperature, visitors can see beams of light all around them ,get inspired from the sun.

Void of power The steel parts will light up the sky in night, spinning , rolling and making beautiful shows. Visitors will have a tour around the whole site, the roads were made to cover the model space. The models stands on the ground in a space that is nearly 700m length and 350 width and that to  gain much amount of solar rays to heat the air and generate electricity over the photovoltaic cells. Parking was placed in front of the form  (shaded) and with another parking in the north to cover the whole area, another parking was made to service the staff . With the consideration of making a (non-irrigation system( as a landscape, no plants were implanted, all are hardscape with wood and hard elements covering the lands.


The Land Art Generator Will Produce About 120MW. It will cover up to 60000 Homes

Courtesy of Mekano

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Cite: Hank Jarz. "Layers of Dubai / Mekano" 01 Nov 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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