As Texas A&M at Qatar emerges as a hub for exchanging knowledge and ideas, it expands and strengthens partnerships and collaborations for the benefit of the State of Qatar. The branch campus is now home to several centers of excellence known worldwide for research and service to industry.
Gas and Fuels Research Center
GFRC is a multidisciplinary research center led by Texas A&M University at Qatar involving 28 faculty from Texas A&M University’s main campus in College Station and the university’s Qatar campus, and represents different engineering programs, including chemical engineering, petroleum engineering, material engineering and mechanical engineering.
The Gas and Fuels Research Center was formally established by the Board of Regents of The Texas A&M University System as an official part of the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), which has been providing practical solutions to real-world problems for more than 100 years. This world-class research center is advancing natural gas exploration, production, treatment and processing. Qatar is the natural destination for the center, as it is home to some of the most significant gas resources on the planet, including the largest liquefied natural gas and gas-to-liquids plants in the world, and to an integrated supply chain of cleaner energy sources in addition to value-added chemicals and ultra-clean fuels.
- Advance gas and fuels exploration, production, treatment and processing research activities
- Establish multidisciplinary projects and collaboration models within TEES with industry and academia worldwide
- Serve as a consulting entity and training center in areas of specialty
- Integrate TEES resources to support the Qatar 2030 vision to advance its human and research resources in the clean energy field
- Educate students and professionals about natural gas as an energy source and its monetization techniques to disseminate information about TEES activities in this field to science, society and the general public
- Build a consortium with involvement of several governmental agencies and industry to support GFRC vision and activities
- Serve as an international, interdisciplinary center of excellence.
- Build a platform for multidisciplinary research in which faculty members, researchers and students from the campuses in College Station and Qatar can collaborate and conduct research projects.
- Apply for Grand Challenge and Mega Projects funds (DOE, NSF, State of Texas, Qatar National Research Fund, Qatar Science & Technology Park and industry)
- Encourage the advancement of natural gas exploration and processing technologies.
- Educate the public and provide high-quality training to undergraduate, graduate, postdoctoral students, and professionals
The director of the center is professor of chemical engineering and petroleum engineering Dr. Nimir Elbashir.
Learn more about the center here.
Mary Kay O'Connor Process Safety Center-Qatar
The chemical processing industry drives much of Qatar’s economy, but the industry can carry risks to environmental quality and human health and safety. Controlling these risks are the motivation behind process safety, a framework for building good designs and engineering procedures meant to prevent and mitigate major hazards such as fire, explosions and toxic releases.
Promoting process safety in industry is the goal of the Mary Kay O’Connor Process Safety Center– Qatar, which—since its launch in 2013 by Texas A&M at Qatar and Qatar Petroleum—has taken on a vital role in Qatar, providing a process safety education to students and working with Qatari industry to promote process safety. The center brings engineering faculty, students and companies together to train a new generation of engineers who make safety a key part of their practice and the culture of Qatari industry, and to build safety knowledge at a local level.
Research helps identify and characterize such hazards, assess the risks involved and find ways to eliminate or at least reduce those risks to a tolerable level. Working closely with industry gives center researchers real-world information and feedback on process safety work, going beyond the academic and hypothetical. The center also helps companies further develop the process safety knowledge of their existing workforce through short courses, tutorials and other forms of continuing education, including its annual Qatar Process Safety Symposium. Through this three-pronged approach of teaching, research and training, the center is helping make safety second nature to a new generation of engineers, directly benefiting industry and the public in Qatar and elsewhere in the world.
The center is supported by an industry consortium which currently consists of ConocoPhillips, Qatar Fuel Additive Company (QAFAC), Qatar Petrochemical Company (QAPCO), Qatar Shell, Qatargas and Gulf Organization for Industrial Consulting (GOIC).
The managing director of the center is chemical engineering associate professor Dr. Luc Vechot.
Lead the integration of process safety – through education, research, and service – into learning and practice of all individuals and organizations.
Serve as the Process Safety Center of Excellence that promotes:
- Process safety as a personal value that is second nature for all stakeholders
- Continuous progress toward zero injuries and elimination of adverse impacts on the community.
Lear more about the center here.
Qatar Sustainable Water and Energy Utilization Initiative
Qatar Sustainable Water and Energy Utilization Initiative (QWE) was established in 2010 and meant to be a Center of Excellence for open and cooperative research, and capacity building established to address the sustainable water and energy issues relevant to the State of Qatar. The QWE builds upon a strong scientific and technological base related to the sustainable utilization of water and energy, of direct relevance to Qatar. The initiative aims to sustain and expand this critical knowledge resource; to provide knowledge and technology transfer to stakeholders; to provide technical services; to provide continuity to the R&D efforts; to support long-term national programs; to engage in campaigns to promote the need for sustainable water and energy utilization to the wider public; and, of special importance, to develop the human capacity needed to address scientific and technical issues related to current and future water and energy utilization. All of these activities need to be targeted to meet the specific needs of potential stakeholders.
The philosophy of QWE is to fulfil the timeless university functions of sustaining and developing knowledge; contributing to the local and global community by actively engaging in applied research with a problem-solving focus and developing solutions to contemporary problems. Having developed a strong research base, QWE is conducting international-level research and promoting basic and innovative research that supports the university’s objective of becoming a world-leader in water, environmental, and energy efficiency research. We actively strive to disseminate our research findings to local and international community while developing human resources in Qatar. Partnerships with world-class groups in Qatar, North and South America, Europe, Australia, and Asia ensure that the scientific and technical expertise deployed at QWE is of the highest possible standard. We cooperate with the stakeholders to help identify and satisfy their immediate and long term scientific and technological goals. We run training programs, workshops and seminars to create a core of scientists and engineers with the necessary water and energy expertise. We work to engage the public in the debate on sustainable water and energy development and management.
The director of the initiative is chemical engineering professor Dr. Ahmed Abdel-Wahab.
Learn more about the center here.
Smart Grid Center Extension in Qatar
Texas A&M at Qatar launched the TEES Smart Grid Center extension in Qatar, which aims to enable making smart grid a reality in Qatar and worldwide.
Electric energy is key to every economy and for societal prosperity across the globe. The smart grid effort aims to transform this critical infrastructure using computer-based remote control and automation. The smart grid integrates electricity and information and communication infrastructures to produce electricity more efficiently and reliably, as well as cleanly and safely for the environment.
The center strives to become a reference point and a key player in the field of smart grid in the community and in the region, working toward ensuring energy security. The center trains engineering students and professionals in electric energy-related concepts and technologies in Qatar and helps with technology transfer in Qatar to benefit the economy. It will help integrate electricity and information and communication infrastructures to produce electricity more efficiently and reliably, as well as cleanly and safely for the environment. In short, the Smart Grid Center is working to solve pressing energy issues while meeting the needs of future generations.
As a part of the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station, the Smart Grid Center works toward the goal of transforming the electrical grid infrastructure to meet the demands of the 21st century, and the center’s interdisciplinary team will work to make smart grid a reality in Qatar, as well as worldwide. This center is a part of Texas A&M at Qatar’s efforts to meet the pressing challenges of Qatar’s growth and development by providing research, facilities and expertise available nowhere else in the region.
The managing director of the center is electrical engienering professor Dr. Haitham Abu-Rub.
Learn more about the center here.
Texas A&M at Qatar Advanced Scientific Computing Center
A longtime Texas A&M at Qatar research initiative in advanced scientific computing was designated an official center of the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) in late 2016, bringing together faculty and researchers from a wide variety of engineering and science disciplines to tackle complex computational problems. The Advanced Scientific Computing Center—the second Texas A&M at Qatar research initiative to be named a TEES center—aims to become a regional and global leader in scientific computing by developing innovative solutions and using state-of-the-art computational tools to address computational challenges in science, engineering and industry.
The center, led by Dr. Othmane Bouhali, already actively contributes to the implementation of the Qatar National Research Strategy in the field of computational science and its applications, including materials science, computational chemistry, medical physics, system biology and high-performance computing. Internationally, the group strives to create links with supercomputing and computational science centers, and locally, the center is building partnerships with our colleagues at local institutions within Education City, Hamad bin Khalifa University and others.
The center’s official TEES designation marks Texas A&M at Qatar’s place at the vanguard of high-performance computing (HPC). The branch campus is now in its 12th year of HPC and is a member of the exclusive HPC500, which comprises the world’s foremost entities that bring HPC technology to bear on challenging problems in science, engineering and business. Through HPC, Bouhali has collaborated with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) for more than 20 years.
TASC has organized online Computational Science Seminars that featured presentations by experts on topics such as data-driven materials discovery and artificial intelligence. The seminar series has attracted researchers from various technical fields that utilize the power of computational analysis and design.
Learn more about the center here.