Khalifa University and Alibaba Cloud Launch Joint Innovation Laboratory to Focus on Artificial Intelligence for Clean Energy

Sep 20, 2018

The Lab will become the leading hub for energy and digitalization in the UAE market

Hangzhou, China/Abu Dhabi-UAE: 20 September 2018 – Khalifa University of Science and Technology, a research university dedicated to the advancement of learning through the discovery and application of knowledge, and Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing arm of Alibaba Group, today announced the launch of a Joint Innovation Laboratory of Artificial Intelligence for Clean Energy ("The Lab"), strengthening scientific cooperation between the two companies in the fields of energy and computer science.

Both parties intends to leverage Lab as the innovation hub for clean energy solutions , utilizing artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing and big data technologies to develop future energy technologies and energy-saving materials.

The launch was announced during the opening ceremony of the Computing Conference 2018 hosted by Alibaba from 19-22 September in Hangzhou, China. Jack Ma, Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group, Daniel Zhang, the Chief Executive Officer of Alibaba Group, Simon Hu, President of Alibaba Cloud and Senior Vice President of Alibaba Group, Dr Steve Griffiths, Senior Vice-President for Research & Development, Khalifa University, and Dr. Tiejun Zhang, Associate Professor, Khalifa University attended the ceremony.

The Lab will focus on three research themes: AI-enabled subsurface energy production and processing, machine learning-enabled clean energy materials development, and AI/cloud computing-powered smart renewable energy systems. Initial projects are expected to be rolled out from now to 2023. The projects will be sponsored by Alibaba Cloud and led by Dr. Tiejun Zhang from Khalifa University as the principal scientist leading the research cooperation this collaboration.

Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice-President, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, said: "Our partnership with Alibaba Cloud to launch the Joint Innovation Laboratory of Artificial Intelligence for Clean Energy illustrates the role of Khalifa University in contributing to the overall advancement of science and technology in the UAE. Khalifa University prioritizes research and innovation in the UAE's strategic areas such as energy and artificial intelligence. We firmly believe this joint Lab will be an effective platform for our students and faculty, providing extra stimulus to developing novel technologies in these areas."

"The Lab will be able to draw on the expertise and contributions from multidisciplinary scientists, professional engineers, talented students, industrial partners, and government stakeholders for research and innovation in the fields of artificial intelligence, energy science and engineering," said Simon Hu, Senior Vice President of Alibaba Group, President of Alibaba Cloud, " Alibaba Cloud has always been at the forefront of driving the future technology. We are excited to see how our cloud computing technology can advance research breakthroughs and empower science. For us, this is the true meaning of inclusive technology."

Professors and scientists from Khalifa University will provide their technical expertise to advance the Lab's research effort while Alibaba Cloud will make available research scientists and specialists as well as advanced cloud computing resources to support the Lab's development.

About Khalifa University of Science and Technology

The Khalifa University of Science and Technology merges the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research and the Petroleum Institute into one world-class, research-intensive institution, producing world leaders and critical thinkers in applied science and engineering. The Khalifa University of Science and Technology endeavors to be a catalyst to the growth of Abu Dhabi and the UAE's rapidly developing knowledge economy as an education destination of choice and a global leader among research intensive universities.

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About Alibaba Cloud

Established in 2009, Alibaba Cloud (, the cloud computing arm of Alibaba Group, is among the world's top three IaaS providers according to Gartner, and the largest provider of public cloud services in China, according to IDC. Alibaba Cloud provides a comprehensive suite of cloud computing services to businesses worldwide, including merchants doing business on Alibaba Group marketplaces, start-ups, corporations and government organizations. Alibaba Cloud is the official Cloud Services Partner of the International Olympic Committee.

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