Global safety science organization opens laboratory in Abu Dhabi

The UL Middle East Electrical laboratory is its first industrial lab in the region, providing safety tests to help deliver a sustainable future
The purpose-built lab will test electrical items found in most buildings to prevent against the risks of fire, power outages and electric shock
Featuring four specialist testing zones – Environmental, Dust, Aqua and Heat, including one of the world’s largest temperature rise test facilities
UL works with government authorities in the GCC to increase public protection across various sectors

Global safety science organization, UL, has officially opened its new testing laboratory in Abu Dhabi.
The state of the art laboratory spans over 850 square meters and will specialize in testing electrical equipment to ensure it is equipped to withstand the various climatic and industrial conditions encountered in the Middle East.
The purpose-built laboratory has been split into four testing zones – Environmental, Dust, Aqua and Heat, which also boasts the region’s largest temperature rise test facility. One of its key purposes will be to minimize the risk of fires in the region by expertly testing electric panel boards being used in numerous hospitals, schools, commercial and residential buildings.
As a global leader in safety testing, UL works with various government authorities in the GCC to promote safe living and working environments. With construction continuing at pace across the region the new laboratory will offer a trusted source of testing and reassurance to its corporate and government clients, which have employed UL to ensure the end consumers are protected.
Hamid Syed, UL, Vice President & GM said: “The opening of UL Middle East Electrical laboratory is not just a major milestone for UL, but also for the UAE and the wider region.
“The power sector in the Middle East has seen rapid growth in recent years driven by huge industrialization and increased energy consumption. This has led to a huge increase in the supply chain with both locally manufactured products and imports comprising of various electrical items found in most building such as switchgears, circuit breakers, cable management systems, transformers and distribution accessories.
“Many authorities have introduced strict pre-qualification requirements to ensure public safety and set a benchmark of quality. Therefore, these various vital products and components must undergo the right level of testing to ensure they reach these levels of quality and protect the public from risks such as fires.
“There have been some devastating fires in the Middle East in recent years and we will be working with key authorities to minimize this risk in the years to come.”
The fully automated and remotely accessible Heat Zone in the Mussafah based laboratory has a capacity to pump currents up to 20kA and reach a heat of 70 degrees Celsius in a room that spans over 100sqm in area, while the Environmental zone offers multiple mechanical and environmental tests for extreme corrosion, damp heat, humidity, UV and thermal stability.
The Dust zone consists of one the world’s largest chambers for ‘ingress protection’ testing to ensure various kinds of electrical equipment will not be affected by sand and other fine dust particles and is complimented by the Aqua zones water ingress protection tests, which includes a state of the art rotating and inclinable table that can bear a load of up to 4 tones.
Regulators such as Abu Dhabi Distribution Company, Distribution Review Code Panel (Oman) and the Saudi Electricity Company are advocating robust regulatory frameworks to control supply chains and ensure safe and reliable products are entering the markets. UL, one of the world leaders in Testing and Certification, has been at the forefront of these regulations playing the role of trusted adviser to the regulators and utilities in the region.
The testing capability was conceived and invested in Abu Dhabi in the UAE following the close working relationship with ADDC (Abu Dhabi Distribution Company), part of ADWEA (Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority).
The Lab was formally inaugurated by UL’s SVP & President – International – Gitte Schjotz, on October 30th 2016 and dedicated to the region’s growth with a commitment of expansion to meet the needs of the region as well as by continuing to elevate the benchmark in safety and quality for local testing and compliance regulations.
UL has a network of laboratories around the world offering various specialist tests to its clients to ensure the safety of household products such as kitchen appliances and children’s toys to large industrial appliances. The new laboratory opening in Abu Dhabi follows the recent acquisition of U.S. based Consumer Testing Laboratories (CTL) to further expand UL capacity for consumer testing services.

Dubai Gazette