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Desertification and Water Treatment: WDRC Researchers Win Top Honors
Researchers from King Adbullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Water Desalination and Reuse Center (WDRC) have taken both first and second place in the worldwide “Help to Avoid Desertification” idea contest, sponsored by Bayer MaterialScience.
The winners of this worldwide competition, comprising 97 entries, were announced on June 29, 2012. In first place was KAUST PhD candidate Noura Shehab. Her proposal, supported by co-advisors Prof. Pascal Saikaly and Prof. Gary Amy, entitled “The End of Desertification – A Novel & Sustainable Technology for the Middle East and North Africa Arid Lands”, won the top prize of €7,000.
Also recognized were a team of engineering specialists, under the helm of Prof. Amy, represented by Rodrigo Valladares Linares and Muhannad Abu-Ghdaib, and post docs Zhen-Yu Li and Chun-Hai Wei. Their proposal, “Hybrid membrane system for impaired water recovery, energy production, and salt-tolerant crop harvesting in water-scarce regions”, was awarded the second prize of €4,000.
Both winners have been invited to visit the Bayer MaterialScience headquarters in Leverkusen, Germany in September. Noura Shehab hopes that this trip will be an opportunity to interact with industry players.