Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: The Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy, and sustainable technologies, and Strata Manufacturing PJSC (STRATA), a composite aero-structures manufacturing facility based in Al Ain, today jointly announced they have intensified their collaboration efforts by establishing the Strata Lab at Masdar Institute.
The lab’s purpose is to accelerate advancement in manufacturing, automation, and materials research into aerospace production lines. Additionally, it will also act as a collaborative space to engage third party companies and research laboratories, including aircraft manufacturers, either as research collaborators or as users of the technologies to be developed.
Ismail Ali Abdulla, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Strata, said: “We are committed to research and development and know that through our collaboration with the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, we will be providing a shared space offering full access to the research capabilities of both organizations. This lab will play a key role in advancing aerostructure manufacturing solutions to the benefit of our customers and the industry.”
Dr Steve Griffiths, Vice-President for Research, Masdar Institute, said: “The establishment of the Strata Lab at Masdar Institute strengthens not only the research and collaboration capabilities of our two entities, but also enriches the UAE as a whole by facilitating the development of expertise and innovation in advanced materials. We look forward to seeing the industry-relevant outcomes of the new Strata Lab.”
Three Masdar Institute faculty members under Dr. Mohammed Omar, Professor, Engineering Systems and Management, and Head of Institute Center for Smart and Sustainable Systems (iSmart), and two post-doc researchers are fully engaged in active research in the lab. Three UAE national students are also engaging in thesis research through the lab, which is set to attract more students and researchers in the coming months. Additionally, five Strata engineers and researchers are already engaged in activities at the lab.
Dr. Omar said: “The lab at Masdar Institute currently features a variety of testing systems such as novel thermography-based imagers, ultrasound based sensors and instruments, robotic manipulators and precise laser scanners and trackers. More robotics manipulators will be added along with full-size composite aerospace structures in the near future. These systems will further help Strata to expand their product base and develop technologically advanced materials for the customers.”
In May 2015, Masdar Institute and Strata unveiled a new prototype aerospace structure defect detection system, which has now reached the industrialization phase. More advanced functions are being added to the system. This system will be the first to be deployed in verifying composite based aerospace structures at Strata’s Al Ain manufacturing facility.