Qatar is known to have really hot days, especially during the summer. That’s why the government is doing everything in its power to try to alleviate the heat. One of the means to do so is through research, and using advanced technologies for the cause.
One such proposal is the “cool pavement” project which is implemented by the Public Works Authority in Qatar. This technology uses a cryogenic material which helps lower the temperature of asphalt in the roads of the country’s capital Doha.
How Qatar is Cooling the Pavement to Reduce Heat
Why the Old Asphalt Doesn’t Work
According to Al Jazeera, Qatar aims to replace conventional asphalt with a new on that has a cryogenic material. The old asphalt material has a tendency to absorb 95 percent of the sunlight that hits it, reflecting only a small amount. This makes for a very hot pavement. The new asphalt absorbs less and reflects more, greatly reducing the temperature of the roads and ultimately, the temperature of the place itself.
According to Hossam Almeer, a data scientist from the Qatar Computing Research Institute, this project shows the government is open minded about using technological advances to solve problems. He adds that this cooling effect also helps the country save energy. In fact, seventy percent of the electricity consumed by a home in Qatar goes to air conditioning.
This new asphalt is currently being tested at a road 200 meters long, located close to the famous Souq Waqif. Another testing site is near the Katara Cultural Village, also 200 meters, on pavement for bikes and pedestrians. These two testing locations are specifically used since they are major destinations for tourists in the capital city.
The testing will be done in a period of eight months, as these test roads are opened to traffic during that duration. This assures proper, real-time data will be obtained regarding the effectiveness of the cooler roads. The results of the test will determine if it can be used throughout the whole city, or the whole country.
Other Ways to Beat the Heat
There are many ways to beat the heat in Qatar. If you like movies, you can just go to cinemas where the air conditioning is a breather against the brutal Qatar heat. You can also just stay at home at night, spending quality time with your family. Ice-skating is also a favorite cool hobby among Qataris wanting to stay cool.
Indeed, it is wonderful that Qatar is embracing science and its technological advances to improve the welfare of its citizens.