The Masdar Institute of Science and Technology - the

Masdar Institute Fact Sheet
About Masdar Institute
- Masdar Institute of Science and Technology (Masdar Institute) was established by the
government of Abu Dhabi as an independent,non-profit, research-driven graduate
university dedicated to higher education andresearch inadvanced energy and
sustainable technologies.
- Masdar Institute was developed with the support and cooperation of the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and currently operatesin close on-going
collaboration with MITto develop research and development (R&D)capacity in Abu
Dhabithat addresses issues of importance to the UAE and the region.
- Located in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Masdar Institute aims to
support the Emirate’s economic diversification by nurturing highly-skilled human and
intellectual capital, and partnering with industry leaders to helpthe Emirate transform
toa knowledge-based economy as per the Economic Vision 2030.
- The Institute serves as source of innovation and human capitalfor the region providing
qualified students with the opportunity to pursue graduate studies and research in
critical areas such as renewable energy, sustainability, environment, water resources,
engineering systems and management, advanced materials, etc.
- Masdar Institute focuses on complex real-world problems that require a
multidisciplinary approach for the development of solutions from an integrated
technology, systems and policy perspective.
- To be a world-class graduate research university focused on advanced energy and
sustainable technologies;
- To provide cutting-edge research and graduate education;
- To develop human capacity in clean energy and sustainable technology;
- To foster the development of a diversified knowledge-based economy;
- To incubate a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship;
- To help position Abu Dhabi on the world map as a leader in science and technology.
Academic Programs
- Masdar Institute offers 8 masters programs based on the US graduate education model:
 MSc Electrical Power Engineering
 MSc Engineering Systems and Management
 MSc Computing and Information Science
 MSc Materials Science and Engineering
 MSc Mechanical Engineering
 MSc Microsystems Engineering
 MSc Water and Environmental Engineering
 MSc Chemical Engineering
- Masdar Institute offers a Foundation Program for UAE national students in order to give
them the opportunity to expand their knowledge, enhance their skills and ensure their
success in the graduate program of their choice.
- The foundation Program is designed to attract those talented UAE national graduate
applicants who may lack the necessary GRE and TOFEL requirements, but who are
otherwise qualified to enroll as Master’s Degree candidates, by enabling them to meet
the core degree requirements.
- The program runs for up to one year and prepares students for two years of advanced
studies in their chosen Master of Science (MSc) program through intensive courses,
research projects, hands-on activities and an optional practical summer experience at
Admission Criteria*
- A relevant undergraduate degree from a recognized and accredited university;
- A minimum CGPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0point scale) or equivalent;
- A TOEFL score of 577 for paper-based, 233 for computer-based, 91 for internet-based;
or an IELTS score of 6.5 and above;
- A competitive GRE score with no less than 155 on the Quantitative section;
- Statement of objectives;
- 3 letters of recommendation.
* The above criteria are the minimum requirements and do not guarantee admission to the
- Students admitted to Masdar Institute are offered a full scholarship including:
 100% tuition fee
 Textbooks
 Laptop
 Accommodation
 Medical insurance
 Annual travel expenses
 Competitive stipend (cost of living allowance)
- The research focus at Masdar Institute addresses real-world energy and sustainability
challenges from an integrated technology, systems and policy perspective;
- Faculty and students are dedicated to pursuing research that will meet the economic
and developmental needs of not only Abu Dhabi and the UAE, but also the world at
- Masdar Institute takes a multidisciplinary approach toresearch that includes the
following major themes:
• Water, Environment and Health
• Future Energy Systems
• Microsystems and Advanced Materials
- A large number of research projects are additionally undertaken by Masdar Institute
faculty and students on topics including renewable energy technologies, smart grids
and smart buildings, energy policy and planning, advanced electronic devices and water
and environmental technologies.
- Masdar Institute seeks to engage external partners from industry, government, and
other academic institutions in collaborative partnerships;
- Masdar Institute is working with aerospace and defense corporation Boeing, Abu Dhabi
flagship carrier Etihad, and specialty materials company Honeywell UOP on a major
research programand demonstration project in Abu Dhabi dedicated to the
development of sustainable biofuels for aviation, using integrated saltwater agricultural
- The Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations (ADCO), Petroleum Institute (PI),
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Masdar Institute have joined together
for collaborative research into carbon sequestration;
- Masdar Institute is collaborating with Siemens ona long-term R&D program for Smart
Grids, Smart Buildings(SGSB), and Carbon Capture and Storage (CSS) in form of
scholarships and R&D funding. Masdar Institute’s collaboration agreement with
Siemens covers also solar energy technology research and development to enhance the
use of PV panels in the Middle East as well as joint testing and research activities
focusing on solar panel coatings.
- Masdar Institute and the Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC) launched a
collaborative program in Microsystems Engineering, focusing on the areas of
nanoprocessing technology, digital systems, integrated microelectronic devices and the
physics of micro-fabrication.
- Masdar Institute has been working in close cooperation with Emirates Aluminum
(EMAL) on a research program to improve the efficiency and overall environmental
performance of aluminum ore smelting and production.The two parties are also
developing training programs for the purpose of creating a skilled national workforce
capable of meeting the needs of the industry.
- Masdar Institute entered intoan agreement with IRENA to support the development of
an atlas of solar and wind resources. The agreement ensures cooperation between both
parties for exchange of information; joint implementation of project activities, analyses
and research studies; as well as defining technical compatibility and methodological
harmonization and data transparency protocols for solar and wind data.
- An additional agreement was signed between Masdar Institute and IRENA to support
the Institute’s effortsto help develop a knowledge-based economy through capacity
building and human development. As part of this agreement, IRENA will award up to 20
scholarships annually to talented students across the eight Master’s programs offered
at the Masdar Institute.
- Masdar Instituteinked a landmark deal with Toyota Motor Corporation (January 2012)
that aims to facilitate research on the advancement of low-carbon emission vehicle
technologies. The deal resulted in a joint scholarship programthat will offer annual
scholarships to highly-qualified graduate students from around the world to work on
projects in the area of technologies for sustainable development.
- Masdar Institute and the ICT Fund of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority
(TRA) signed a collaboration agreement (May 2012) which will provide scholarships for
30 UAE national students to study ICT at the Masdar Institute at the TRA’s expense. The
agreement is part of Masdar Institute’s collaboration with nationalorganizations to
support human capital development efforts in the UAE. In effect, the collaboration aims
to provide the ICT sector in the UAE with skilled Emirati professionals, and help
graduating national students to find work in the ICT sector.
- The Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) has joined hands with Masdar Institute
and the Research Institute for Industrial Science and Technology (RIST) in Pohang of
South Korea (September 2012) to design a robust and cost-efficient micro-grid
operating on 100% renewable energy.The conceptual design consists of a control
system, energy storage, and a high efficiency DC distribution system that
incorporates renewable energy sources such as solar PV, small wind power and
biofuel production from waste and algae. The micro-grid system can be linked to
local seawater desalination and electric powered boats used for accessing an island
near Abu Dhabi.
- An MoU (October 2012) signed with the Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority
(ADWEA) aims to identifyareas for exchange of scientific and technological
information through research collaborations, covering sustainable energy, water and
environmental issues. Short courses and seminars for the benefit of internal and
external stakeholders will also be developed, while ADWEA will ensure its respective
personnel offer support and assistance to students on graduate courses at Masdar
Institute in their experimental research thesis work.
- GLOBALFOUNDRIEShas granted a number of students, researchers and professors
from Masdar Institute privileged access to its technology development platform at
its Abu Dhabiheadquarters to process design kits (PDKs) for advanced semiconductor
technology nodes, including the latest and revolutionary HKMG 28nm channel
transistor technology.Graduate students preparing for their research project will also
have the opportunity to apply for a three-to-six month internship at one of
GLOBALFOUNDRIES sites worldwide.
MIT Partnership
- MIT contributes to development of degree programs and curriculumplanning at Masdar
- Senior administration staff at Masdar Institute are assessed and hired in consultation
with MIT;
- MIT conducts assessment of potential faculty and students in cooperation with the
Masdar Institute;
- New faculty hires spend up to a year at MIT, working on collaborative research projects
and developing the graduate-level course materials for classes they will later teach at
Masdar Institute;
- MIT and Masdar Institute faculty are engaged in on-going collaborative research
- Masdar Institute Foundation Program students may take part in a practical experience
program at MIT;
- In conjunction with their Master of Science diploma, Masdar Institute graduates are
issued a certificate jointly signed by Masdar Institute&the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology(MI&MIT Cooperative Program) in recognition and endorsement of the
successful completion of the requirements for the awarding of the Master of Science
- Masdar Institute has 73faculty members from 32countries, enabling students to benefit
from a unique range of insights and experiences;
- Masdar Institute faculty are graduates from leading international institutions including
MIT, Stanford University, University of California – Berkeley,University of Michigan,
Korea Advanced Institute of Scienceand Technology, University of Waterloo, Oxford
University, Cambridge University and Harvard University.
- Masdar Institute had its first intake of students in 2009, consisting of 88 students;
- Masdar Institute saw the graduation of its first class of scientists and engineersin June
2011, comprising 72 graduates in 5 Master’s programs;
- Masdar Institute witnessed the graduation of its second batch of scientists and
engineers in May 2012, comprising 55 graduates in seven Master’s programs;
- Masdar Institute’s third intake consisted of 166 students, who joinedthe
Institute’sgraduate programs in the Fall of 2011;
- Total number of students(2011-2012) was 240, representing nearly 40 countries;
- In September 2012, the total number of enrolled students reached 337;
- UAE students represent over 41% of the total student body, and females represent
more than 35% of all students.
- Student body is expected to grow to 600 - 800 over the next five years
- Masdar Institute alumnus, Rana Qudaih, won the 2011 Borealis Student Innovation
Award for her thesis on Polyolefins (plastics). Qudaih additionally received an
opportunity to present her thesis at the Borealis Innovation Day event in Linz, Austria.
Qudaihwas commended for the broadness and applicability of her work and
complimented as the first female winner of the master thesis award.
- Masdar Institute Electrical Power and Engineering Master's student, Yousef Mahmoud,
was the first author of the paper titled "A Simple Approach to Modeling and Simulation
of Photovoltaic Modules" that was accepted for publication in IEEE Transactions on
Sustainable Energy. His advisors, Masdar Institute Associate Professor Dr. Hatem
Zeineldin, and Assistant Professor Michael Weidong Xiao, were co-authors of the paper.
- As a member of the Masdar Institute Laboratory for Energy and Nano Sciences (LENS)
team under the guidance of Mechanical Engineering Associate Professor Dr. Peter
Armstrong, Steven Meyers an alumnus who graduated in June 2011, was named in the
esteemed Forbes 30 ‘Under 30’ achievers list in the ‘clean energy’ category for his
research in thermal and optical modeling of the Beam Down Solar Thermal Plant in
Masdar City.
- A joint research paper by Mustafa Amir Faisal, a Computing and Information Science
student at Masdar Institute, was selected the winner from among a total of 16 papers
that were presented at thePacific Asia Workshop on Intelligence and Security
Informatics (PAISI 2012) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The paper titled "Securing
Advanced Metering Infrastructure Using Intrusion Detection System with Data Stream
Mining" won the ‘Best Paper Award’ for its research innovation, potential significance,
rigorousness of research methods, clear presentation, and relevance to the PAISI
- Masdar Institutelaunched the UAE Solar Atlas at the Rio+20, the United Nations
Conference on Sustainable Developmentheld in Rio de Janeiro, Brazilon June 20-22,
2012. The Solar Atlas displays the hourly/daily/yearly solar irradiance maps that were
produced by a robust satellite-based mapping tool developed and validated at the UAE
Research Centre for Renewable Energy Mapping and Assessment at Masdar Institute.
The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs has taken a leading role in initiating the national
contribution to the IRENA Global Atlas Project. Other local stakeholders include the
Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi (EAD), UAE
National Center of Meteorology and Seismology (NCMS) and Masdar Power.
- The editorial board of the respected Nanotechnology journal selected a fundamental
study on nanoscale energy dissipation as part of a special edition that includes the
highest relevant articles from 2011.Dr. Sergio Santos of LENS was the leading author of
the paper and he was part of a research group that was led by Dr Matteo Chiesa and
compriseda group of collaborators including Dr. Victor Barcons, Dr. Joseph Font, Dr.
Albert Verdaguer and Dr. Neil H. Thomson from Spanish and British universities.
- A paper co-authored by a UAE-based scientist Dr. Iyad Rahwan, Assistant Professor,
Computing and Information Science, was chosen for publication by the esteemed
Science journal. The paper analyses the tactics adopted by various teams during the
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Network’s Red Balloon Challenge,
which measured the crowd-sourcing power of today’s social media platforms.
- A team led by Dr. Raed Hashaikeh, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering won
the ‘elevator-pitch’ competition titled ‘Entrepreneurship Bootcamp: From Laboratory to
Marketplace’ at the INSEAD/SMART Entrepreneurship Bootcamp in Singapore. Dr
Hashaikeh’s team won the competition for effectively selling the idea that the novel
biodegradable material produced from processing cellulose developed at Masdar
Institute, could be used to improve water storage and availability in sandy soils.
- Masdar Institute has been selected as the lead research institution to represent the Gulf
Cooperation Council (GCC) in the EU-GCC Clean Energy Network.The network was set
up to develop strategic cooperation in clean energy among various players in the
European Union and the GCC region. Masdar Institute’s selection for this prestigious
role was made following presentations by Gulf research institutions to the Energy Team
of the GCC Secretariat in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
- Masdar Institute received an award for its participation in Earth Hour2011. The award
was issued by the Emirates Wildlife Society in association with the World Wildlife Fund
and the Abu Dhabi Municipality.Masdar Institute had joined hundreds of millions of
people around the globe in celebrating Earth Hour on March 26. Lighting was switched
off at the campus at 8:30 pm as part of the world’s largest public environmental action.
Masdar Institute also put up an Earth Hour Booth at the Abu Dhabi Corniche where
students and staff engaged with the public to raise awareness of climate change and
highlight the Institute’s commitment to sustainability.
- Outreach programs aim to increase the awareness, interest and involvement of the
youth community in energy and sustainability issues.
- The mission of outreach programs is to reinforce students’ knowledge, interest and
academic skills in science, engineering and technology as they relate to the graduate
programs and research conducted at the Masdar Institute.
- Outreach programs seek to achieve the following goals:
Develop awareness of renewable energy, environment and sustainability issues in
the UAE and worldwide;
Encourage more sustainable behavior and better involvement in sustainability
initiatives among the youth of today;
Develop UAE undergraduate students’ interest in science and engineering and
inspire them to pursue graduate studies and research of relevance to the UAE’s
strategic goals;
Introduce undergraduate students in the UAE and abroad to the Masdar Institute
programs, mission and goals.
Young Future Energy leaders:
- A major part of Masdar Institute’s outreach programs is the Young Future Energy
Leaders (YFEL) program;
- YFEL aims to be the world’s preeminent program that develops tomorrow’s leaders in
the fields of advanced energy and sustainability;
- The mission of the YFEL program is to educate and inspire students and young
professionals to become future leaders capable of solving the world’s most pressing
challenges in advanced energy and sustainability;
- YFEL invites every year over 100 young professionals and university students from the
UAE and around the world to participate in a year-round program of activities and
- YFEL provides an important avenue for today’s young leaders to learn about and discuss
the priorities, perspectives and proposed solutions to problems that will impact future
generations through local and international seminars, debates and networking events;
- Entry into the YFEL program is selective and highly competitive, with prospective
candidates required to demonstrate a deep interest in advanced energy and sustainable
technologies and also the talent needed to make a real and ongoing contribution to the
- YFEL works to achieve the following goals:
Educate YFEL members (YFELs) in the fields of advanced energy and sustainability
through short courses, workshops and seminars;
Provide a platform to engage YFELs in debates and global discussion in advanced
energy and sustainability;
Provide opportunities for YFELs to share their innovative ideas in advanced energy
and sustainability with their peers as well as industry, government and academic
Provide networking opportunities and visibility to YFELs through high level events
and meetings;
- Masdar Institute’s first summer internshipwas launched in July 2011;
- The program targets academically talented UAE national students, who are passionate
about finding innovative solutions to energy, sustainability and environmental issues;
- Internships run for five weeks every summer and are open only to UAE nationals who
are upcoming university seniors and/or those just graduating;
- Interns work closely with Masdar Institute faculty to conduct exciting research on topics
relating to energy, the environment or sustainability.
- Internships are designed to achieve the following goals:
Nurture adequately qualified university students with a penchant for research and
Inspire UAE undergraduate students to pursue graduate studies at the Masdar
Promote a culture of research and innovation among local undergraduate
students and the UAE community as a whole;
Raise awareness of the role of R&D in developing knowledge-based economy and
sustainability in the UAE.
- Masdar Institute sustainable campus is powered entirely by renewable energy and was
designed by Foster & Partners, which is also designing the infrastructure of Masdar City;
- The campus, which consists of a main building, aknowledge center and students’
quarters, uses significantly less energy and water than business as usual.
Masdar Institute campus landmarks include:
Personal Rapid Transit System
Student Residence
Knowledge Center
Wind Tower
Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) System:
- The PRT system can accommodate four passengers and travels at speeds up to 40kph
on straightaway and 25kph on curves
- It is Powered by a battery that recharges while vehicles are docking in the stations
- Driverless vehicles controlled by an advanced navigation system and are equipped with
onboard sensors to detect obstacles and avoid accidents
- Wireless connection keeps PRT vehicles linked to the central computer
- Easy to control by following the information on screen and interface for vehicle
activation, intercom, doors, medical assistance and emergency stop
Student Residence:
- Student residence contains four buildings, two for males, one for females and one for
families: a total of 102 apartments;
- The buildings feature the red sand-colored undulating glass reinforced concrete (GRC)
screens that replicate the function of the traditional Arab mashrabiya screens;
- The balconies design provide privacy as well as shade from the sun, thus preventing
solar gain on the building walls;
- The façade is highly-sealed and insulated, and wrapped in 90 percent recycled
aluminum sheeting in the same red color of the GRC screens;
- Water saving specifications allow for 54 per cent less potable water consumption
compared to the UAE average with separate grey- and black-water drainage.
Knowledge Center:
- The domed roof of the Masdar Institute’s Knowledge Center (Library) is meant to
optimize the building’s photovoltaic (PV) energy harvesting;
- Windows at the Knowledge Center are shaded to prevent direct sunlight from reaching
inside and reduce building cooling loss;
- The library offersstudents an in-house collection of hundreds of reference books and
academic titles, as well as access to thousands of electronic materials including journals,
books, dissertations, reports and online research databases;
- The Library is committed to supporting the academic and research missions of the
Institute by providing access to library services, collections in a variety of formats, and
information resources designed to meet the curriculum, research, professional,
intellectual, creative and personal needs of the university community;
- The Libraryworks to promote and improve users’ competency and information literacy
skills through cultivating strong research, analysis and assessment abilities.
- The Library strives to equip students with the real-world information and research skills
necessary for success in the 21st century knowledge economy.
- Masdar Institute Library seeks to achieve the following objectives:
To support Masdar Institute’s mission of establishing and continually evolving
interdisciplinary, collaborative research and development in advanced energy and
To support the instructional, information, research, and curriculum needs of the
Institute through a large collection of electronic databases and online resources;
To enable the user to understand and utilize effectively the full range of
information services;
To foster the acquisition of skills necessary for independence in lifelong learning;
To maintain and develop relationships with other library services and institutions
within the county and abroad; and to facilitate cooperation and collaboration.
Wind Tower:
- The Wind Tower is a modern interpretation of the region’s most widely-known
traditional architectural feature called Al Barjeel;
- It is 45 metershigh and is designed to capture cooler winds and directs them to the
open-air public square;
- Sensors at the top operate high-level louvers to open in the direction of prevailing
winds and to close in other direction to direct wind down the tower;
- Air-cooling techniques enable the wind tower to generate a cool breeze in the square
below even in low-wind conditions;
- The LED lighting of the tower will change color to let residents and visitors know
whether energy use at the Institute is above or below target level;
- It is used as a platform for scientific instruments including weather measuring
equipment and air quality monitoring tools.
- The labs’ wall insulation levels are also more than three times higher than the
benchmark set by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning
- Strict air tightness standards aim to control the infiltration of hot and humid air;
- Laboratory structures have air-filled ethylene tetrafluoroethylen (ETFE) cushions that
ensure almost no solar gain on the structures and limit the heat radiated to the street;
- The laboratory interior has been designed with an open-plan, column-free floor plan to
facilitate conducting integrated and cross-disciplinary research projects;
- All services such as power, data, gasses and ventilation are located in the overhead
service carriers, thereby enabling plug-and-play access anywhere on the floor;
- All lab furniture including the largely glass-walled offices can be easily re-located based
on researchers’ requirements;
- Masdar Institute laboratories are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and
equipment that support its applied research in strategic areas relevant to Abu Dhabi
such as carbon capture and sequestration, semiconductor industry, nanotechnology,
clean mobility, aerospace engineeringand other areas.
- A cleanroom is a specialized laboratory room in which the air is highly filtered in order
to keep out impurities;
- Cleanrooms are typically used in manufacturing or scientific research that requires a
low level of environmental pollutants such as dust, airborne microbes, aerosol particles
and chemical vapors;
- The air entering a cleanroom from outside is filtered to exclude dust, and the air inside
is constantly recirculated through air filters to remove internally generated
- Masdar Institute’s micro-fabrication laboratory includes a 300-sq meter cleanroom
facility (class 1000/100) that already hosts state-of-the-art equipment partially donated
by ATIC and installed with the collaboration and guidance of the Microsystems
Technology Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT);
- Masdar Institute cleanroom helps to support its nano-fabrication research and other
studies on novel nano-electronic and photonic devices within the Microsystems
Engineering program;
- Masdar Institute cleanroom is meant to strengthen the Institute’s nanofabrication
capabilities for nanoelectronics and nanophotonics, while fostering specific skills of
students in the semiconductor industry.