Tuesday 20 November 2018

Masdar in Abu Dhabi sewerage tunnel partnership

ABU DHABI, January 22, 2017

The Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, an independent, research-driven, graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technologies, said it has signed an agreement with the Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company (ADSSC), that will enable knowledge sharing and advanced research for the sustainable and safe construction of underground tunnels in Abu Dhabi.

The MoU is directly related to Strategic Tunnel Enhancement Program (Step), one of the longest pipeline infrastructure project in the world, remarked Mubarak Obaid Khamis Al Dhaheri, the deputy managing director of ADSSC, after signiong the deal with Dr Behjat Al Yousuf, Interim Provost, Masdar Institute.

Step has successfully laid down 41 km of deep sewer tunnels in Abu Dhabi. The completed tunnels will have the capacity to accommodate a flow of 1.7 million cubic meters of wastewater per day by 2030.

Dr Al Yousuf said: "Rapid urbanization in the UAE demands the development of more underground infrastructure like pipelines. However, the environmental impact of underground construction, including tunnels, is substantial."

"That is why it is important to develop a robust knowledge base to ensure that underground infrastructure projects are developed in a way that balances between meeting growing infrastructure needs and preserving the environment," he noted.

Al Dhaheri said this collaboration with Masdar Institute supports the ADSSC’s goal to proactively co-ordinate with relevant authorities in order to deliver infrastructure to the highest standards while enhancing sustainability.

"This collaboration will enable Masdar Institute students to receive hands-on training in the field, with access to ADSSC project sites like the Step site, which will in turn support the development of a cadre of highly-skilled tunneling experts who will be critically needed as rapid urbanisation will place greater demand on underground infrastructure," he added.

Dr Rita Sousa, the assistant professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, said: "We have already developed a novel software program in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), which is composed of different tools that allows optimal planning, design and construction of tunnels while considering different sources of uncertainties that are inherent when dealing with the underground."

"The integrated set of tools allows one to simulate tunnel construction and determine cost and times of construction, including uncertainties associated with geology and construction, which helps optimize the 3D alignment of the infrastructures," she stated.  

An expert in geotechnical engineering, Dr Sousa is using ADSSC’s Step as a case study for her work.

The MoU signed between Masdar Institute and ADSSC directly supports collaborative information and knowledge sharing about the project.-TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Masdar | Sewerage | partnership |

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