United Arab Emirates: Emirates Global Aluminium, the largest industrial company in the United Arab Emirates outside oil and gas, today started the latest round of its research partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
For the past five years, EGA has hosted post-graduate students from MIT’s David H. Koch School of Chemical Engineering Practice at its sites in the Jebel Ali and Al Taweelah in a programme designed to combine the latest academic thinking with EGA’s deep industrial experience.
MIT’s David H. Koch School of Chemical Engineering Practice has been sending students to apply their academic knowledge and expertise to propose innovative and innovative solutions to industrial companies for more than 100 years. EGA was the first Middle East company to participate.
The eight-week 2019 programme will see nine Master’s and PhD student engineers work with EGA team leaders to develop novel solutions for industrial challenges ranging from reducing energy consumption to exploring new ways to convert magnetic fields into other useful forms of energy.
Two of the projects will take place at EGA’s new Al Taweelah alumina refinery, which began production in April. One of these projects will support EGA’s ongoing work to develop economically-viable uses for bauxite residue, a by-product of alumina refining.
Abdalla Al Zarooni, Vice President of Technology Development and Transfer at EGA, said: “This is our fifth series of projects with MIT, and we are pleased to continue this innovative programme in the Middle East. Since 2015 this program has brought many benefits to both parties, helping to expose EGA engineers to the latest academic thinking and turning academic innovations into industrial reality. Previous projects with MIT have already delivered more than a million dollars a year in cost savings as well as environmental performance improvements.”
MIT is the leading research university in the United States with a 150-year history of advancing knowledge in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship.
Once the 2019 program is concluded, EGA will have completed 30 individual research projects with MIT.
EGA has developed technology in the UAE for more than 25 years, focused on improving the efficiency of the aluminium smelting process. EGA’s latest home-grown technology is among the most efficient and competitive in the global aluminium industry.
EGA has used its own technology for every smelter expansion since the 1990s, and has retrofitted all its older production lines.
In 2016, EGA became the first UAE industrial company to license its core process technology internationally, in a major step forward for the development of a knowledge-based economy in the UAE.
EGA’s research and development team works with local and international universities on research projects. Institutions EGA partners with in the UAE include Khalifa university, the American University of Sharjah, Rochester Institute of Technology and Higher Colleges of Technology while EGA’s international academic partners include the University of Auckland in New Zealand and the University of New South Wales in Australia.