Newswise — Dr. Imen Gherboudj, who is a research scientist with the Research Center for Renewable Energy Mapping and Assessment (ReCREMA) at Masdar Institute, has won the Middle East Solar Industry Association’s (MESIA) Woman of The Year Award 2017 award.

The award was presented to Dr. Gherboudj during a gala ceremony on 18 January, during the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2017. She was selected by a panel of nine judges, drawn from across the industry.

The Middle East Solar Awards 2017 is the industry’s premier awards ceremony. Now in its fifth edition, this annual event serves as a platform to recognize and celebrate exceptional talent and achievements in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) solar industry sector. There are 10 categories in the awards and the application was open to everyone.

Dr Hosni Ghedira, Director, ReCREMA, said: “Dr Gherboudj has made us all proud with this remarkable recognition. Her commitment and hard work has truly paid off. This award is a testament to her outstanding achievement, dedication and ingenuity. She was the first post-doctoral researcher to join ReCREMA and has played a leading role in setting up state-of-the-art satellite receiving facilities at Masdar Institute. She led the development of the data processing, archiving and data dispatching protocols that are presently used in all real-time products operated by ReCREMA. Dr. Gherboudj has demonstrated an outstanding research and leadership capability over the last six years as a research scientist at Masdar Institute.”

Dr. Gherboudj whose research Interests covers dust, soil moisture, ocean color and many times of satellite modeling, is currently engaged in passive and active remote sensing and satellite data management at ReCREMA. A leader in research of solar resources using remote sensing for the UAE at ReCREMA, she has conducted and supervised fundamental studies of dust, soil moisture, and solar irradiance using passive and active remote sensing based on satellite data. Dr. Gherboudj has a PhD in Backscattering Modeling, from the University of Quebec, in Canada.

Dr. Gherboudj said: “I am deeply honored to receive such an important award, the Woman of The Year 2017, from the Middle East Solar Industry Association. This wonderful achievement is shared with the ReCREMA team and Masdar Institute. I was nominated for this award by my colleagues at the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy and Masdar Institute and I am sincerely grateful for this recognition.”

The work done by Dr. Gherboudj and her team of researchers has resulted in a vastly improved understanding of the solar resources of the Arabian Peninsula. It has also provided new insights and forecasting capabilities for the transport of atmospheric dust and aerosols, which are important not only for solar resource forecasting, but also for human health and safety. She has been a clear technical leader in this endeavor.

The detailed research into meteorological, dust, and solar irradiance databases conducted by Dr. Gherboudj‘s team is an invaluable resource for both further research and commercial benefit. The in-depth and systematic understanding of the historical solar irradiance record, combined with accurate and timely forecasts of solar resources and technology performance, greatly enable the solar industry across the Arabian Peninsula, by reducing revenue uncertainty and enhancing bankability of solar projects.

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