Kingdom Enters Nanotechnology Quest

Prince Muqrin: Dedicated people make universities greatRIYADH: Prince Muqrin Bin Abdul Aziz, chief of General Intelligence, launched the King Abdullah Institute for Nanotechnology in Riyadh’s Techno Valley, on behalf of King Abdullah, Sunday.
Prince Muqrin said that people are what make universities “great.”
“However beautiful the buildings are and however advanced the equipment is, universities are only meaningful with men and women who are sincere to their nation and to its children,” he said.
During his founding of the institute affiliated with King Saud University, Prince Muqrin said the facility and its people will make great strides in the critical field of research.
“Nanotechnology was not born today and it is not in a special field, but it is in all fields – from paints to medicines. And now we will witness the role of this technology in desalination and agriculture.”
Nanotechnology, the study of controlling of matter on atomic and molecular scales, holds promise for a diverse range of scientific developments. Experts believe nanotechnology can create new materials and devices with applications in medicine, electronics, energy production and other fields.
Addressing the Kingdom’s future in nanotechnology among the countries of the world, Prince Muqrin said, “The flurry of activity and momentum I see in the universities promise a bright future and advancement. I am one of the big supporters of the support the universities provide to the youth. Also, there should be support for medium- and small-sized companies so youths supervise their work seriously.”
In a speech he made on the occasion, Prince Muqrin said, “Through close monitoring of the international scene and trends of modern technology in the advanced countries, it was noticed that there is great attention and huge financing being provided to the field of nanotechnology because the one who will have the greater share in nanotechnology will rule the world economy in the 21st century.”
Prince Muqrin said, “The Kingdom has never been isolated from this huge technological development in the world. And with its awareness, our leadership realized the value of modern technology in the development of the country. For this reason, the initiative of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques came to give attention to nanotechnology. The King is personally enthusiastic about this promising technology. This is a clear indication of a deep understanding of the value of science in achieving socio-economic development in the Kingdom with the highest levels of quality and rare scientific expertise.”
In his speech, Prince Muqrin said, “King Saud University has today become an international institution that is occupying a place among 400 world universities, according to the Shanghai Classification, and is at the top of the list of Arab and Muslim universities. Sincere people are behind this honorable classification. They devoted themselves to serving the nation and raising its stature in the Arab world and in the world in general.”
Prince Muqrin said, “What distinguishes King Saud University is that it always strives to keep abreast of the latest developments in science and technology. Undoubtedly, the different specializations in medicine, engineering, biological sciences and information technology make nanotechnology of utmost importance for scientific research in King Saud University; this technology is considered to be a scientific revolution in the current age.”
Prince Muqrin continued, “The universities have a strategy to boost research in different nanotechnology fields. From this standpoint, there came the royal approval for the establishment of the King Abdullah Institute for Nanotechnology and today we have laid the foundation stone for its construction.”
Prince Muqrin expressed his gratitude and appreciation for the donation by Muhammad Bin Hussein Al-Amoudi to construct the Institute.
“This is not strange for a man who is known for his love and devotion to the rulers of this generous nation,” Prince Muqrin said. “May Allah reward him for this. This donation is an example to be followed and I take this opportunity to call upon businessmen to donate to such projects.”
In his visit, Prince Muqrin saw one of the patents established in the institute and was briefed on a model for seawater desalination powered by solar energy. He also saw the projects of Riyadh Techno Valley, launched the Advanced Manufacturing Center in the College of Engineering and met the research team for manufacturing the first Saudi car, the Ghazal 1.
Prince Muqrin also launched Al-Nida Technology Company as the first nascent company in Riyadh Techno Valley. The company was started by a King Saud University graduate, Engineer Khaled Bin Sa’eed Al-Zahrani.
In a speech during the ceremony for laying the foundation stone for King Abdullah Institute for Nanotechnology, Dr. Abdullah Al-Othman, president of King Saud University, said investments in Riyadh Techno Valley have reached SR300 million. He said Techno Valley will fill the gap between research products from the university and the needs of the private sector.