ENEC Sponsors State-of-the-Art Virtual Classroom at Khalifa University


- ENEC and Khalifa University collaborate to implement advanced training techniques

- Students to benefit from highly adaptive, effective and secure virtual training programs

Abu Dhabi, UAE – 12 November 2016: The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) has announced the inauguration of a new, state-of-the-art virtual classroom at Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research (KU). The highly adaptive, effective and secure virtual classroom will enable students at KU and ENEC personnel stationed at Barakah to jointly participate in advanced training programs.


The opening of the new classroom was preceded by a ribbon cutting event where Mohamed Al Hammadi, CEO of ENEC, welcomed participants and highlighted the new facility’s numerous benefits. Attendees also heard from Dr. Tod Laursen, President of KU and Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice President of KU.


Virtual classrooms allow groups of students to participate in immersive training environments, including interactive computer-based 3D simulations and visualizations that replicate real life devices.


ENEC Project Manager, Raja Imran, led a demonstration of the new classroom’s nuclear engineering simulator, which will be used to safely train students by allowing them to remotely operate virtual equipment and experience real-life scenarios. The demonstration included a live connection between KU and the training facility at the Barakah nuclear energy plant site.


“Our virtual classroom is a state of the art distance learning tool that will enable nuclear engineers to benefit from our high quality of education and expertise from across the Emirates, and potentially even from across the region some day in the future,” said Dr. Tod Laursen President of KU. “Distance learning is a wonderful tool, that many international universities utilize, in order to make knowledge accessible, and this Virtual Classroom is no different.  However, it does have the added benefit that our students are on site at the Baraka plant so are able to apply what they are learning directly to the work they are doing.  It’s really an amazing tool that will ensure that the nuclear engineers in the UAE are some of the most capable in the world”.


This significant development from ENEC falls in line with the UAE’s 2008 policy on the Evaluation and Potential Development of Peaceful Nuclear Energy, and comes as part of the strategic effort to develop Emirati human resources, qualified engineers as well as technical and regulatory personnel in the nuclear energy field. The project is also in line with Abu Dhabi Vision 2030, which has a focus on human capital development in the fields of science, technology and engineering.


“Developing the nation’s brightest minds to become the future leaders of the UAE’s emerging nuclear energy industry is one of ENEC’s key priorities,” said Mohamed Al Hammadi, ENEC CEO. “In delivering the UAE’s first nuclear energy plant, we are very much aware of the need for specialist engineering and scientific talent. The long-term sustainability of the UAE’s nuclear energy industry lies in the development of our people, nurturing existing talent and delivering world-class training - and by focusing on using the latest training and scientific programs.”


“In line with its goal of delivering safe, clean, efficient and reliable nuclear energy to the UAE, ENEC makes use of some of the latest tools and technology in its education and training program “, added Al Hammadi.


Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Khalifa University’s Executive Vice President said: "We are pleased to open the Barakah nuclear power plant virtual classroom at Khalifa University. It brings the Barakah plant, which is over 290 km’s away, directly to our campus where students can access and attend lectures remotely.  This state-of-the-art technology has been realized thanks to the fruitful collaboration between Khalifa University and ENEC which provides students enrolled in the University’s Masters in Nuclear Engineering Program with all they need to pursue their future careers at the Barakah plant”.


The Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant is scheduled for completion in 2020, with construction having started in 2012. With four reactors online, the facility will deliver up to a quarter of the UAE’s electricity needs and save up to 12 million tons in carbon emissions every year.


The project at Barakah is progressing steadily. Overall, construction of Units 1 to 4 is now over 72 percent complete. All four units will deliver safe, clean, reliable and efficient nuclear energy to the UAE grid, pending regulatory reviews and licensing.


Photos captions:

  • Mohamed Al Hammadi, welcoming participants during the inauguration ceremony
  • Mohamed Al Hammadi, Dr, Tod Laursen, and Dr. Arif Al Hammadi during the ceremony