Masdar Institute gears up to commission region’s first cleanroom lab

The UAE faculty and students receive nanotech and cleanroom training at UNAM in Turkey

Aaesha Al Nuaimi, Engineering Systems and Management student, working in the cleanroom facility at Masdar Institute

Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, is gearing up to begin operations at the region’s first cleanroom laboratory by the end of this year. As part of the preparations, three faculty members and four students from Masdar Institute participated in the Second International Workshop on ‘Cleanroom Training for Critical and Sustainable Technologies’ program that was held from 25 June - 8 July in Ankara, Turkey.

Hosted by Ulusal Nanoteknoloji Arastirma Merkezi (UNAM - National Nanotechnology Research Center), the program was supported by the Turkish Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology, Turkish International Cooperation & Coordination Agency (TIKA), Turkish Ministry of Development, and Statistical, and the Economic and Social Research and Training Centre for Islamic Countries (SESRIC). A collaborative initiative of United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and UNAM, the workshop focused on the nanotechnology application areas and the participants were trained on the fundamentals of cleanroom use and safety; micro/nano-scale process design and optimisation as well as project and process-specific equipment training.

Dr Irfan Saadat, Dr Hasan M. Nayfeh, and Dr Marcus Dahlem, Professors of Microsystems Engineering program at Masdar Institute, with Omar Alnemer, Aamna Alshehhi, and Helmy Ally, students of Microsystems Engineering as well as Farsad Chowdhury, student of Materials Science and Engineering, participated in the workshop in Turkey.

Dr Fred Moavenzadeh, president, Masdar Institute, said: “Part of our mandate is to initiate measures that will pave way for the innovations in advanced technology and take the UAE to its next phase of growth as directed by the country’s leadership. The preparations for the region’s first cleanroom facility at Masdar Institute bear testimony to our commitment to contribute to knowledge building in high-technology areas.

Dr Irfan Saadat said: “The field of nanotechnology is rapidly evolving in the UAE as the country is launching itself into high-technology sectors. Participating in global workshops including the one at UNAM in Turkey helps us to expand our understanding of nanotechnology and operations inside a cleanroom laboratory. The high technology facilities at UNAM provided us with additional insights in Microsystems Engineering and we hope this knowledge will guide us in conducting research projects at Masdar Institute.”

Dr Hasan Nayfeh said: “The workshop at UNAM in Turkey proved beneficial prior to commissioning the first cleanroom laboratory at the Masdar Institute. We have purchased tools, and have hired staff that will support micro/nanoscale experimental research. Our plan is to have the cleanroom ready for our first wave of experiments by this year-end, in support of our research programs in microelectronics.

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