Several measures adopted to protect visitors of Prophet's Mosque from summer heat

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

MADINAH — Coinciding with the huge influx of Hajj pilgrims to the holy city of Madinah before the start of the rites of the pilgrimage, the Saudi government has taken several measures to protect them from the sweltering summer heat.

These measures, followed up by the Prophet's Mosque agency, include air-conditioning systems, huge umbrellas, mist fans, white marble, and chilled Zamzam water.

The air-conditioning system runs with high efficiency; its cooling level is automatically adjusted depending on outside heat to maintain a balanced temperature.

The Central Air Conditioning Station covers an area of 70,000 square meters and comprises the world’s largest concentrator to cool water. It has 6 coolers, each with a capacity of 3,400 tons. The water cooling reaches as low as 5 degrees Celsius.

The agency uses the latest methods and technologies to distribute water received from the station in an accurate, consistent and automatic manner to treat, distribute and cool the air.

The cooling in the Prophet's Mosque is done by pushing air through pipes connected to the pillars of the Prophet’s Mosque. The water cooling cycle is completed by returning the air through insulated pipes to reach the central station to complete the cooling process.

The number of umbrellas installed in the Prophet's Mosque reached 250. Each of the huge umbrellas has a height of 15 meters, and each one weighs 40 tons. The umbrellas operate with an automatic system to protect the worshipers in the courtyards of the mosque from the hot sun. They also protect them in the event of rain.

The mist fans in the Prophet's Mosque's courtyards cool the atmosphere and reduce the heat.

There are 436 water mist fans in the courtyards of the mosque. The central mist network is subjected to continuous sterilization to ensure the quality of the water and that it is free of bacteria to preserve the safety of visitors.

The white marble — known as the Thassos marble — covers the areas allocated for prayer in the courtyards of the Prophet's Mosque. The marble reflects heat and light, and absorbs moisture through minute pores during the night. During the day, it emits moisture absorbed at night. This is the reason why the floor is always cool even at times of high temperature.

As for the chilled Zamzam, the agency distributes it for drinking through 20,000 containers — 22,000 at peak times — in addition to the several water points (mashrabiya) in the courtyards.

In addition, water bottles are distributed among visitors throughout the Prophet's Mosque. These efforts are intensified during the summer.