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Masdar Institute and Strata in Research Tie-Up to Develop Tougher Aerospace Structures in UAE

Abu Dhabi-UAE: 10 November, 2014 – Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, and Strata Manufacturing, an advanced composite aero-structures manufacturing facility fully owned by Mubadala Development Company, today announced a research collaboration focusing on developing novel and advanced testing systems and methods for aerospace structures.
 
The collaborative research will develop a new infrared testing system capable of inspecting carbon fiber reinforced plastics in real-time, using controlled pulses of high intensity light. It will accommodate the online settings of current production lines and provide quantification of the tested samples’ structural integrity while contributing to quality assurance at Strata’s facilities.
 
The research team comprises two UAE national students with one research engineer and includes Dr. Mohammed Atif Omar, Head of the Masdar Institute Center for Smart and Sustainable Systems (iSmart), and Associate Professor, Engineering Systems and Management. The team will also be developing local competence in developing several variations of this technology to fit the specific needs of Strata.
 
This cooperation research project with Masdar Institute will explore the possibilities of using infrared thermography to provide alternate methods for non-destructive testing inspection.

Badr Al-Olama, Chief Executive, Strata Manufacturing, said: “As directed by the country’s leadership, such collaborations also provide the framework for future cooperation between the academia and industry that is vital for the development of the aerospace sector in the UAE. We are looking forward to benefitting from this collaboration.”
 
Infrared thermography technology systems assist in accurate quality control of light and robust composite materials and other lightweight construction processes in the aerospace industry.
 
Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh, President, Masdar Institute, said: “The research collaboration further consolidates Masdar Institute’s contribution to capacity building in a high-technology intensive area such as aerospace. With the support of the UAE leadership, we continue to build new capabilities and expand our collaborative research framework. We believe this research project will lead to new solutions, while supporting local knowledge-intensive industries and contributing to the country’s diversified economic base.”
 
The novelty of this well-researched infrared thermography technology system stems from the fact that it is a new way of testing and is supported by a team at Masdar Institute who possess a unique set of expertise and credentials in this application. In addition, the system(s) and subsystems used in this project will be built at on-campus facilities at Masdar Institute and all the processing algorithms will also be coded in-house.
 
The collaboration highlights best practices in industry-university cooperative research to obtain immediate benefits for industry. Additionally, it will help in developing streamlined production lines, while nurturing and developing the culture of in-house research and competencies in advanced technologies.
 
Through the Strata collaboration, Masdar Institute will develop local credentials in the aerospace research arena while building a dedicated UAE National team capable of sustaining the research thrust even after graduation.

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