TAMUQ gets $39mn QNRF funding for 39 research projects
TRIBUNE NEWS NETWORK
DOHA TEXAS A&M University at Qatar (TAMUQ) received $39 million in research funding for 39 projects from Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) at the National Priorities Research Programme (NPRP) cycle 5 awards, recently.
The university’s success rate for proposals was 36 percent, compared to a 25 percent success rate for all institutions.
Funded projects span the university’s degree programmes in chemical, mechanical, electrical and petroleum engineering, as well as its science programme.
Dr Mark H Weichold, dean and CEO, Texas A&M at Qatar, said, “Research is one of the central areas through which TAMUQ works to support the State of Qatar in reaching the Qatar National Vision 2030.
The $39 million of funding received by the university in the NPRP cycle 5 awards from QNRF demonstrates the high quality of research conducted at the university and caliber of the institution’s faculty and research staff. We thank QNRF for the confidence they have placed in our institution and look forward to using these awards to generate new knowledge that benefits the State of Qatar.” Dr Marcelo Castier, professor of chemical engineering, received funding for his project, titled ‘Fluid Separations by Adsorption in Porous Solids’. Castier is the lead project investigator for the research, and he will work with co-project investigators in Brazil and the US.
Explaining the project, Castier said, “Adsorption is a phenomenon that depends on interactions between the molecules of fluid and solid surfaces.
It plays a key role in catalysis and separations in chemical industries. This is relevant to Qatar, as can be seen through examples such as catalyst performance in Fischer- Tropsch processes for producing liquid hydrocarbons from light gases and separations of natural gas components.” “The goal of the project is to develop engineering-oriented equations of state to predict the properties of fluids inside these pores by extending models for bulk fluids widely used for designing oil and gas and petrochemical processes,” said Castier. “The expectation is to obtain practical methods for designing adsorption equipment that are more accurate than those currently used.” Dr Reza Tafreshi, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, was also among those who received funding for projects at the university. “The increase of natural gas share in the energy matrix in Qatar has posed a strong demand on offshore exploration and production,” Tafreshi said. “In this project, titled ‘Automated Identification of Subsea Architectures via Reduced Order Modeling’, we will significantly contribute to the efficiency and expenditure of the subsea subsystems that are used to explore gas and oil. We will improve the performance of field-proven approaches and propose optimal subsea subsystems design.
The application pursued by the proposed work is new, and the results of such leadingedged technology will be valuable, both to Qatar and to the oil and gas industry in general.” In addition to announcing research funding, QNRF also recognised TAMUQ with two new merit awards, ‘Research Office of the Year’ and ‘Best Research Team of the Year’.
Donna Duffee, manager of research services at the university, accepted the research office award. The research team award was presented to Dr Milivoj Belic, professor of physics and his team.
Belic’s project titled ‘Nonlinear Photonics for All-optical Telecommunication and Information Technologies’, involved theoretical and numerical study in physical sciences, computer science and information technology in a collaborative effort between institutions from Australia, Europe and Qatar.