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Knowledge Exchange, Academic and Research Initiatives Signify Masdar Institute’s Participation in WFES 2012

Key Highlights Include Scholarship Program, Research Partnership and Announcement on Two Students’ Antarctica Expedition with IAE 2012 Team

 

Abu Dhabi-UAE: 23 January, 2012 – Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, today announced knowledge exchange on clean energy and sustainability as well as new academic and research initiatives marked its participation in the just concluded World Future Energy Summit (WFES) 2012.

The special initiatives include a scholarship program with Toyota Motor Corporation, the world’s leading automotive manufacturer, and the inclusion of two Masdar Institute students on Sir Robert Swan’s International Antarctic Expedition (IAE) 2012 team. Additionally, a master research partnership agreement with Masdar PV GmbH, leading German-based manufacturer of photovoltaic films, was also announced at WFES 2012.

At the same time, Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh, President of Masdar Institute, and various officials and faculty members marked their participation with driving discussions at workshops and seminars throughout the four-day event in Abu Dhabi. They included Dr Steve Griffiths, Executive Director, Institute Initiatives, and Dr Toufic Mezher, Professor in Engineering System and Management, Dr. Mahieddine Emziane, Associate Professor, and Prof Adel Gougam, Assistant Professor – Material Science & Engineering.

One of the highlights of Masdar Institute’s participation is the Masdar Institute-Toyota Scholarship Program that is expected to help 10 students to conduct research on the advancement of low-carbon emission vehicle technologies. One student will be selected for each academic year and the scholarships will be offered to highly-qualified graduate students from around the world to work on projects in the area of technologies for sustainable development.

Each student will spend two weeks at Toyota Motor Corporation and other sites in Japan, learning about the company’s efforts to develop cutting-edge low emission vehicle technologies and also Japanese industries’ efforts towards simultaneously realizing economic growth and environmental preservation.

Another key highlight was the announcement on the inclusion of two students from Masdar Institute – Maitha Al Kaabi and Reem Al Junaibi – on the IAE 2012 team led by Sir Robert Swan, the first person in history to walk both the North and South Poles.

During their 16-day voyage to the icy continent, the students will participate in the ‘2041 E-Base Goes Live’ mission, by utilizing the knowledge they gained at Masdar Institute. The E-Base is a sustainable green building operated in an environmental and resource-efficient manner and the place where the expedition team will rely solely on renewable energy – solar, wind or thermal power. The two students will also participate in team workshops as well as a selection of multimedia lectures covering the wildlife, geology, history and geography of the Antarctica Peninsula.

Speaking at a workshop titled ‘Building a robust R&D infrastructure in Abu Dhabi’, Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh lauded the UAE for adopting a holistic and multidimensional approach. He pointed out that through capital formation and market creation for the development of a robust R&D infrastructure, the UAE has taken the right step to diversify the economy and move towards a knowledge-based society.

Reiterating its role in furthering sustainable technologies through partnerships, Masdar Institute hosted a workshop in collaboration with First Solar, Inc., a leader in photovoltaic (PV) solar modules and a premier provider of comprehensive PV solar systems. Titled ‘Solar PV: Striving for Grid Parity – the Importance of R&D in a fast evolving industry’, the event helped to highlight the vital role of R&D in the fast evolving solar power industry.

Participating in the session titled ‘Innovation and Technology: The use of Renewable Energy Scenarios for Decision’ Dr Toufic Mezher, emphasized the need to develop a common ontology for the renewable energy sector and develop knowledge mapping for all the existing information. He pointed out that such measures would be essential for creating, capturing, and delivering knowledge in renewable energy.

Showcasing its role as an academic institution that aims to further knowledge development, Masdar Institute hosted a careers event titled ‘Human Capital Needs of the Renewable and Advanced Energy Industry: Where do Opportunities Exist?’. The event included a panel presentation and a networking reception for the participants.

Among the round-table discussions, Dr. Mahieddine Emziane spoke on ‘Solar Energy for the Built Environment in GCC: Challenges & Opportunities’, while Prof Adel Gougam shared his expertise on ‘Photovoltaic Technologies for UAE and GCC – Is Si-Based Technology Viable? Technology Perspective’.

Masdar Institute faculty and students also led presentations on various advanced energy and sustainable technologies. They included a session on ‘Masdar Institute’s Role in Shaping the Future Energy Landscape’ by Dr Steve Griffiths and another session on ‘Electron Microscopes at Masdar Institute’ by Dr. Amal Al Ghaferi.

Other presentations included ‘Communication Assisted Electrical Microgrids and Smart grids adapted to highly Distributed Renewable Energy Sources’ by Iraklis Nikolakakos, a Masdar Institute PhD student, and ‘Design and Implementation of a Single Phase Grid-Interactive Module Integrated Converter with Maximum Power Point Tracking’ by Fonkwe Fongang Edwin, Electrical Power Engineering – Research Assistant at Masdar Institute.

Established in 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.
 

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