Water Research Center

Water is a precious commodity across the globe and particularly in semi-arid and arid countries like Sultanate of Oman and is already an important international issue due to rapidly depleting fresh water resources of the world. In the Sultanate, groundwater is the major source of fresh water, which is facing serious threat from pollution due to oil-spills on the ground, saltwater intrusion due to excessive pumping and contamination arising from the mining and agricultural operations. Another issue of major concern is the coastal and marine pollution in and around the Sultanate. The Sultanate has a 1700 km long coastline, which is being affected by oil-related pollution due to ballast water and other operational discharges from ships passing through the Gulf of Oman . A high degree of coastal pollution not only affects the aquatic life, but also has implications on the availability of desalinated water (the Arabian Gulf countries host 70 percent of the world’s facilities of desalinated water). The need thus arises for a forum where research activities pertaining to water can be organized at SQU, national and international levels. There is also a need to effectively disseminate information to the government and public bodies in order to enhance the knowledge and awareness regarding water related issues.


  • Director's Message
  • Vision & Mission
  • Objectives
  • Facilities
  • Contact us

Welcome to the web site of the Water Research Center (WRC) which is envisioned to establish and develop sound approach towards establishing a leading water research center with international recognition. Such goal can be achieved through fundamental and applied thematic research, which is of primary importance to arid and semi-arid areas such as Oman, where water resources are limited and demand is growing. The main focus will be on cross-disciplinary and synergic research in the following areas: Groundwater Desalination Surface water Socioeconomics of water in arid climates Agricultural water management Hydroecology WRC will continue to build on the previous experiences by disseminating the knowledge in water research issues, tackling the challenges and closely working with other centers and colleges.The Center will strive to strengthen collaborative links with several national and international institutions, agencies and companies and with colleges and centers within SQU to address the challenges in water disciplines such as groundwater resources management, depletion and contamination, flood hazard mitigation, optimum irrigation and crop production, global climatic changes in relation to water resources and others. WRC hosts a Desalination and Nanotechnology Chair who coordinates and provides thesis projects and financial sponsorship for students in PhD and MSc programs in the corresponding specializations. Equally important will be to provide networking, training and capacity development, facilitation of consultancy services and extension and data collection and archiving on traditional and innovative water technologies and experience.

Vision:

To be a leading center of excellence in water domain: locally, regionally and globally.

 

Mission:

1- To develop a road-map and lead initiatives to address water issues in the Sultanate.

2- To carry out innovative high quality research on strategic water related issues through coordination and collaboration with SQU faculty, national, regional and international institutions.

3- To effectively outreach and disseminate research findings to the community, public and private sectors.

1- Publish high-quality results on water research in top outlets (peer-reviewed journals, books, conference proceedings, magazines, newspaper).

2- Maintain publication series that synthesize and report on water policy, science and engineering issues Identify challenging water issues of the region and, especially, in Oman, and secure research grants from international, governmental and private sectors to conduct most needed research.

3- Provide scientific and financial consultancy to public and private authorities for contract projects.

4- Facilitate SQU and other colleges/universities researchers to initiate and execute water related research.

5- To provide education opportunities to research students interested water resources and related field of studies.

6- Initiate and participate in the design and execution of national and international seminars, conferences, symposia, workshops and short courses on water issues related to the Sultanate, Gulf countries and the world at large.

7- Develop a national database of information about water related issues. Capacity building and community education in water research

SQU has excellent facilities, which are capable to fulfill academic and research needs related to water research. The College of Engineering has Hydrology and Hydraulics laboratory, Fluid Mechanics Laboratory, Air and Water Quality Laboratory and Environmental Engineering Laboratory that are currently being used for undergraduate and postgraduate degree programs and research projects. The College of Engineering is collaborating with the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization of Japan (NEDO) on seawater desalination to meet industrial and public water demands in Oman .

 The objective of this project is to develop a suitable technology of desalination to supply water for industrial and public use in Oman through construction, long-term testing and evaluation of a model plant, taking into consideration possible oil contamination, high salinity and other characteristics of seawater off the Omani coast. In addition, the project is to train Omani personnel on the conceptual design, operation and maintenance of the developed desalination technology.

The College of Agricultural and Marine Sciences has a 110 hectare Agricultural Experiment Station, which is used for water related research in addition to agriculture. In addition, the College of Agricultural and Marine Sciences has Water, Irrigation Engineering and Hydraulics Laboratories. The College of Science has the Analytical Chemistry Laboratory equipped with the latest analyzers that are to be used for a precise determination of the water quality parameters.

The SQU has its own research vessel to conduct a wide variety of measurements in the ocean. This vessel is equipped with the state of the art measuring probes for water quality and hydrodynamic features in the oceanic environment. All colleges have their own computer laboratories equipped with latest computers and software. In addition to these laboratories, almost every department has an additional specialized laboratory equipped with modern computers and professional software. All faculty members and most of the laboratory staff are provided with their own PCs connected to the Internet via local area network.

Name Designation Extension Email
Dr. Ali Al-Maktoumi

Director

3129 ali4530@squ.edu.om
Mrs. Diana Coordinator  3151 diana@squ.edu.om
Dr. Mingjie Chen Researcher (SB) 3202 mingjie@squ.edu.om
Dr. Azizallah Izady  Researcher  3266  az.izady@squ.edu.om
Mr. Hamood Al-Bahlani Senior Technician 3203 bahlany@squ.edu.om
Mr. Ahmed Al-Mufarji Senior Technician (B) 3203 almafurgi@squ.edu.om
Mrs. Rasha Al-Saadi Technician 3245 rashaa@squ.edu.om
Mr. Hilal Al-Mamari  Technician 3203 hilalmamari@squ.edu.om
Mrs. Amira Al-Rajhi Technician 3245 amira.rajhi@squ.edu.om
Activities & Outcomes
  • Conferences
  • Seminars & Workshops
  • Symposiums & Group Discussions
  • Newsletters
  • Conferences & Workshops Proceedings

1. The 2nd International Water Conference on Water Resource in Arid Areas (WRAA 2020)

2. International Water Conference 2016 on "Water Resources in Arid Area: the Way Forward"

3. First Biennial Congress: Optimizing Water management in a Changing World, Muscat, Oman, 9-11 November 2015. [ MENA NWC link]

4. 2nd Annual Oman Power & Water Summit, 6-9 May 2012

Workshops :

1- World Water Day Yearly Workshops

 

Seminars:

1- Regional Climate of Southwest Asia, Prof. Elfatih A B Eltahir, Prof. & Associate Dept. Head, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 20th January 2016.

2- Tracing Groundwater Origin and Age with Environmental Isotopes, Prof. Ian D. Clark, 3 February 2013.

3- Isotope Geochemistry in saline/brine geological environments, Prof. Ian D. Clark, 9 February 2013.

4- Estimation of Groundwater recharge in North Oman-Hydrochemical and Isotopic approach, 22 May 2012.

5- Water Security and Management, March 2011.

6- Hydrology: Nature and Engineering, 20-21 March 2011. Potential Solutions to Challenges in Water Resources Management.

Symposiums:

1- A Symposium on ‘Disposal of Large Volumes of Water: Challenges and Opportunities for Arid Environments in MAR Practices, 15-16 June 2014 

 

Group Discussion:

1- Maximizing the Use of Treated Wastewater in Irrigation by Year-round Crop Rotation and Conjunctive Use of Groundwater funded by FABRI, 4-6 February 2013

  1. The 1st International Water Conference 2016 on "Water Resources in Arid Area: the Way Forward"
  2. ​The 2nd International Water Conference on Water Resource in Arid Areas (WRAA 2020)