Aiming to advance high-impact innovation in sustainable energy, Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) will collaborate with Iberdrola Innovation Middle East (ME) on research and development in the area of cybersecurity for the smart grid. Under a new collaborative agreement, HBKU and Iberdrola Innovation ME will work to enhance the technology being used in smart grid field deployments in the region. Leveraging respective expertise in cybersecurity and innovative energy solutions, joint efforts will encompass research studies, intellectual property, and commercial collaboration on smart grid telecommunications and security mechanisms.
Smart grids are regarded as a “technological leap” to advance new models of electricity consumption and decarbonisation. With the ability to operate with energy from renewable resources and incorporate digital technology, the huge volumes of data generated by smart grids require effective security solutions. HBKU, through its College of Science and Engineering (CSE), and Iberdrola Innovation ME, which is based in Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP), will both avail faculty, staff, and resources for a research project focused on security techniques for power line communications. Dr Roberto Di Pietro, Professor of Cybersecurity at CSE, will extend his expertise to the joint project team of research scientists and smart grid engineers. Expected outcomes include peer reviewed scientific publications, jointly owned patent applications and, ideally, subsequent commercialisation.
CSE founding dean Dr Mounir Hamdi, Qatar Foundation's Research, Development and Innovation (QF-RDI) vice president and HBKU's vice president for research Dr Richard O’Kennedy, with senior officials from the Office of Industry Development and Knowledge Transfer (IDTK), part of QF-RDI, attended the signing ceremony with Iberdrola Innovation ME QSTP managing director Santiago Banales Lopez, technical director Javier Hernandez Fernandez, and other officials.
Dr Hamdi said: “The new agreement is based on our long-standing relationship with Iberdrola, which is focused on knowledge-driven innovation. We foresee this co-operation actively contributing to Qatar’s energy transformation with a very positive impact on smart, sustainable cities initiatives.”
Iberdrola Innovation ME was established at QSTP in 2016, with the Iberdrola Technology Center undertaking cutting-edge projects in smart grids, renewable integration, and energy management. In October 2021, the Spain-based Iberdrola Group created the Global Smart Grid Hub, a global centre for innovation in smart grids, which combines its technological capacity with that of experts around the world.
Lopez, said: “Our agreement with HBKU reflects our commitment to Qatar’s research, development, and innovation system and boosting knowledge in specific areas of science and energy. Our collaboration will ensure that our joint efforts are at the forefront of solving Qatar’s energy and environmental challenges by advancing solutions for its smart grid capabilities.”
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