WEG Motors Enhance Safety Measures In Prestigious Dubai Hills Estate

The ambitious Dubai Hills Estate project, situated in the heart of Dubai, has set new benchmarks in architectural excellence and safety standards. During the estate’s development, fire safety was a critical consideration. Motor and drives specialist, WEG was called upon to supply its W22 Smoke Extraction motors, developed to ensure air circulation in closed environments, and fast smoke and heat extraction in case of emergency situations.


Boasting an 18-hole championship golf course, three top-tier schools and the grand Dubai Hills Mall among its facilities, the expansive 2,700-acre Dubai Hills Estate in Mohammed bin Rashid (MBR) City, Dubai, promises luxury living. Behind this lavishness is Emaar Properties, one of the largest and most reputable real estate developers in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).


Emaar Properties was responsible for guaranteeing safety for the estate’s residents. That includes the fire safety systems in Dubai Hills Estate, which must guarantee effective smoke extraction in the complex’s many apartments and villas. Emaar enlisted Maico Gulf LLC of Dubai, an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) that specialises in air distribution systems and has an impressive track record in managing diverse projects in the Gulf region.


Smoke extraction

Maico turned particular attention to the fire safety system’s smoke extraction motors. The motors would be required to ensure optimal air circulation in closed environments. Aside from being reliable in emergency situations, the selected motors had to withstand operation at high temperatures, ensure fast smoke extraction and, ultimately, delay the spread of fire. Another concern was that the motors’ design would not prevent access to the Dubai Hills Estate’s many emergency exits.


Fortunately, Maico has a long-standing relationship with the motors and drives specialist WEG, whose products were ideally suited for this prestigious and high-stakes application.


“WEG’s motors were readily available thanks to Maico’s strategic stockholding at its own factory in Ras Al-Khaimah, UAE,” explains Anil Kumar, development sales manager for the UAE, Oman and Qatar at WEG. “This further streamlined the procurement process, ensuring timely delivery even in the face of extended lead times from other manufacturers.”


High-temperature operations

WEG supplied 77 of the W22 Smoke Extraction motors, ranging from 15 to 55 kilowatt (kW). These specialised motors are part of WEG’s wider W22 series, but differ from the rest of the W22 range due to their exceptional ability to operate at temperatures of up to 400 degrees Celsius for two hours uninterrupted. This is a critical feature for fire safety and smoke exhaustion applications in the European market.


The WEG W22 Smoke Extraction motors are meticulously designed to operate flawlessly even in the most challenging conditions, such as during a fire emergency. These motors are equipped with WISE insulation that enables them to function with Variable Speed Drives (VSD). The WISE system incorporates class H wire that can withstand high temperatures, advanced insulation materials, and a solvent-free resin. This exclusive insulation system, developed by WEG, enhances the winding insulation resistance, making it suitable for operation with frequency inverters. By using a frequency inverter, ventilation and air circulation systems can achieve up to 70 per cent energy savings.


The internal bearings within WEG’s W22 Smoke Extraction motors correspond with the C4 code. Selecting the appropriate C code for bearings is crucial for both the bearing and the machine’s performance — the code encompasses all pertinent bearing characteristics including material, lubrication and internal bearing clearance. C4 means the W22 Smoke Extraction motors’ internal bearings can maintain these characteristics for up to two hours, at temperatures of up to 400 degrees Celsius.


Additionally, high-temperature grease is essential for optimal bearing performance. Mobil Polyrex™ EM Series greases are specially crafted for electric motor bearings, employing advanced thickener formulation and proprietary manufacturing techniques to enhance bearing longevity and protection, particularly for ball or roller bearings operating at elevated temperatures.


This specialisation is paramount in ensuring the safety of occupants and minimising property damage in the event of an emergency. Such a capability is achieved through rigorous testing and adherence to the highest industry standards, earning the W22 Smoke Extraction motors the coveted Applus+ approval from laboratories in Spain.


In the event of a fire the motors must continue running for at least two hours to allow evacuation and firefighting operations.


The motor boasts a Premium Efficiency (IE3) rating, signifying exceptional energy performance. It features advanced cooling methods including two types of enclosures, Totally Enclosed, Air Over (TEAO) or Totally Enclosed, Fan Cooled (TEFC).


The motors have various mounting options with foot mounted and pad mounted being the most common. Operating at a wide range of outputs (0.18 to 900 kW) and offering various pole configurations (2 to 8), it adapts to diverse industrial needs.


“The W22 Smoke Extraction motor’s capacity to withstand extreme temperatures, coupled with the WISE® insulation system, allows for reliable performance even under demanding conditions,” said Anil Kumar. “Furthermore, its compatibility with frequency inverters promotes substantial energy savings, making it a sustainable choice for ventilation and circulation systems. This is particularly significant in a development as expansive and multifaceted as Dubai Hills Estate, where safety is paramount.”


Easy installation

Maico was wholly responsible for installing WEG’s motors, a straightforward process reflecting WEG’s commitment to providing user-friendly technology. This collaboration was further fortified by Shapoorji Pallonji, the main contractor appointed to build Dubai Hills Estate’s various buildings and associated infrastructure, plus invaluable guidance from engineering consultancy Khatib & Alami throughout the project.


Any concerns or issues were promptly addressed by WEG’s dedicated support team, underscoring their commitment to client satisfaction. The successful integration of WEG’s motors in the Dubai Hills Estate project stands as a testament to the company’s unwavering dedication to safety and innovation.


“The specialised W22 Smoke Extraction motors have fortified Dubai Hills Estate’s state-of-the-art fire safety measures, ensuring the well-being of occupants and safeguarding valuable property assets,” said Anil Kumar. “With a legacy of supply motors for over six decades, WEG continues to be at the forefront of revolutionising safety in critical applications.”


To learn more about WEG’s smoke extraction motors, visit its website.


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