Two Masdar Institute Students Depart for Antarctica Expedition

September 21, 2018

International Antarctic Expedition 2012 Team Members to Gather in Argentina’s Ushuaia Town

Abu Dhabi-UAE: 28 February, 2012 – Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, today announced two students – Reem Al Junaibi and Maitha Al Kaabi – have departed on their way to Antarctica.

Dr Kenneth Volk, Head of Outreach Programs, Masdar Institute, and Bader Al Zarei, Communications Manager, were present at the airport to wish them luck.

The expedition organized for the two students is part of the Young Future Energy Leaders (YFEL) program, a Masdar Institute outreach initiative that aims to inspire, educate and empower energy leaders of tomorrow.

The students will reach Ushuaia in Argentina on 28 February and board the Sea Spirit on 1 March with members of polar explorer Sir Robert Swan’s International Antarctic Expedition (IAE) 2012 team for a voyage to the southern continent. The expedition will traverse through Chilean territories on Antarctica including Cape Horn, Drake Channel, King George Island and South Shetlands.

During the journey, Reem Al Junaibi and Maitha Al Kaabi will participate in the ‘2041 Education Base (E-Base) Goes Live’ mission by utilizing the knowledge they gained at Masdar Institute. The E-Base, powered solely by renewable energy, is intended to educate young people on the importance of preserving Antarctica, to promote the use of renewable energy, and to raise the awareness of global warming. They will also experience ‘Leadership on the Edge’, Sir Robert Swan’s personal leadership and sustainability program.

Al Junaibi will be applying the planning and forecasting tools she learned from Masdar Institute in Antarctica to help improve the reliability of renewable energy. Al Kaabi will conduct research on the process of temperature-induced salt precipitation, a key principle in her research, in a natural environment. In the dynamic classroom of the Antarctica, guest experts will host presentations, debates, and lessons on environment, climate change, sustainable development, and outdoor leadership.

After completing their expedition, they will return to Ushuaia on 12 March to board their flights home. The two students will reach Abu Dhabi on 16 March. Later, they will share their experience in sustainable living and use of renewable energy with students and faculty of Masdar Institute as well as the wider community in the UAE.

Established as an ongoing 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.