First Masdar Institute-Only Paper Published in Nature Scientific Reports

September 21, 2018

The research was undertaken in Masdar Institute in the Nano Electronics and Photonics Lab

Abu Dhabi-UAE: 11 July, 2013 – Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, today announced that one of its faculty and student have published the first Masdar Institute-only paper in the prestigious Nature Scientific Reports.

The paper is authored by Dr. Ammar Nayfeh, Assistant Professor in Microsystems Engineering, and PhD student Amro Al Khatib, and titled, ‘A Complete Physical Germanium-on-Silicon Quantum Dot Self-Assembly Process’. This work was undertaken in the Nano Electronics and Photonics Lab headed by Dr. Nayfeh (

This research represents an important achievement in material science and quantum assembly.  It enhances scientific progress in fields extending from photovoltaics, low power memories and electronics. As a result, it matches perfectly with the vision of Masdar Institute and Abu Dhabi 2030.

Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh, President, Masdar Institute, said: “Masdar Institute contributes to the UAE’s R&D efforts that will make the country a regional and eventual global leader in the creation of knowledge capital. This paper reflects the extent of our faculty’s contribution to the development of new technologies. With the support of the country’s leadership, we are confident these achievements will continue to keep Masdar Institute in the forefront of scientific innovations.”
Professor Nayfeh says: “We are very excited about this achievement. We are able to precisely locate 10 nm Ge quantum dots without any chemical processing. There are a plethora of potential applications.  The fact that we are able to publish this work in Nature is another big step in placing Masdar Institute of Science and Technology on the research and scientific map.”

The research describes an original method for precise zero-dimensional tiny quantum structures that assemble themselves using an inherently simple manufacturing arrangement. The method requires no chemical processing or lithography. The results achieved highlight an attractive way to manufacture quantum dot structures for future quantum electronics and photonic applications due to its strict precision and simplicity.

The paper is available online at,

Dr. Nayfeh has co-authored several papers, which have been presented in international conferences and published in respective journals. Dr. Nayfeh research focuses on using nanotechnology to enhance future photovoltaic devices and low power electronic devices.  He has also contributed with two other Masdar Institute students in bringing the technical expertise for fabricating advanced thin-film solar cells to the UAE.

Serving as a key pillar of innovation and human capital, Masdar Institute remains fundamental to Masdar’s core objectives of developing Abu Dhabi’s knowledge economy and finding solutions to humanity’s toughest challenges such as climate change.

Established as an on-going collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Masdar Institute integrates theory and practice to incubate a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship, working to develop the critical thinkers and leaders of tomorrow.  With its world-class faculty and top-tier students, the Institute is committed to finding solutions to the challenges of clean energy and climate change through education and research.