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Masdar Institute to Showcase Academic and Research Offerings to UK Students in London

Event on 2 March to Highlight Advantages of Pursuing Graduate Studies in Abu Dhabi’s Research-Based Institution

London/Abu Dhabi: 02 March, 2013 – A team of faculty and students from Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, will be participating in the Spring 2013 QS World Grad School Tour Fair & Seminars on 2 March in London to highlight the advantages of pursuing graduate studies at the Abu Dhabi-based institution.

A large number of students from across universities in the UK are expected to gather for the event from 2.00pm–5.00pm at The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, Broad Sanctuary, Westminster, London. Pre-fair presentations and panels are scheduled from 1.00pm-2.00pm. Dr. Hector H. Hernandez, Assistant Professor, Chemical Engineering, with student Lindsey Gilbert and other representatives from the research-based Abu Dhabi institution will showcase a research project on tapping algae in the UAE. The research project aims to use microalgae as a source of sustainable biofuel.

Developed with the ongoing support of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Masdar Institute’s graduate programs integrate education, research and scholarly activities. With admission criteria similar to MIT, Masdar Institute helps students to be innovators, creative scientists, researchers and critical thinkers in technology development, systems integration and policy.

Masdar Institute is part of Abu Dhabi’s Masdar Initiative to diversify the economy and extend its leadership in the energy sector. Masdar is already a familiar name in the UK, where it is implementing the 870MW London Array-I, the largest offshore wind project. The wind farm off Kent’s east coast has been generating energy since October 2012.

Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh, President, Masdar Institute, said: “Since inception, we have achieved breakthroughs in research and innovation, contributing to developing the region’s human capital and R&D infrastructure. Our patents, research accomplishments and academic success serve as an inspiration for graduate students seeking to enroll and acquire clean energy knowledge. This roadshow offers us an opportunity to interact with students across Europe and apprise them of the learning options at the sustainable campus. We welcome them to take advantage of our educational and research offerings.”
Dr. Hector H. Hernandez said his project aims to identify the UAE’s microalgae and study how they can be used to provide energy-rich molecules for biofuels production. The most promising strains of microalgae can be grown as a crop in the UAE, he remarked and added that developing locally-grown biofuels will provide Abu Dhabi with an export product to tap into the global biofuel market estimated reach US$185.3 billion by 2021.
Such niche options provide potential students opportunities to participate in the creation of intellectual property rights and patents.
Masdar Institute has one patent already issued and 16 active patent applications pending at present. With publications of papers in 311 peer-reviewed journals, 330 conference papers, two full books and 38 invention disclosures, it has already notched up academic and research success.
In addition to providing full scholarship to qualified applicants, Masdar Institute has collaboration agreements with several organizations including the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) for up to 20 scholarships and Toyota Motor Corporation for one student every year to work in sustainable transportation.
For the September 2012 intake, the total number of enrolled students across the eight academic programs reached 336. The student body is expected to grow to 600-800 over the next few years. Two batches of students graduated in 2011 2012.
Masdar Institute currently has 73 faculty members from 32 countries, enabling students to benefit from a unique range of insights and experiences.
Admissions for Fall 2013 are now open. Online application forms can be accessed from www.masdar.ac.ae/Admission.html. A minimum CGPA of 3.0 on a scale of 4.0 and a GRE Quantitative scope of 700 (or 155 on the new scale) are mandatory. Talented applicants, who may not meet the GRE and TOEFL/IELTS requirements but are otherwise qualified to enroll, may be admitted. They will be, however, required to pass two placement exams or complete additional technical and math coursework.
Dr. Hector H. Hernandez joined Masdar Institute as Assistant Professor in Chemical Engineering in 2011. His Microbial Environmental and Chemical Engineering Laboratory (MECEL) focuses on applying biotechnology tools and engineering principles to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate change, and the effects of environmental change and invasive species on ecosystem health. The MECEL team is working on isolating and characterizing microalgae species from the UAE, identifying the microbial composition of camel gut ecosystem, and investigating the role of invasive microbiological species from shipping lanes in the Gulf waters around 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.
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