Dr. Bedair in his lab
Dr. Salah M. Bedair, Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at NC State, has been named a 2012 Recipient of the 2012 Kuwait Prize for Applied Sciences in the area of Energy.
In fulfillment of the objectives of the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS) in supporting scientific research and encouraging scholars and researchers in Kuwait and all other Arab countries, KFAS awards prizes in the fields of Sciences, Arts and Letters, Economic and Social Studies, and the Arabic and Islamic Scientific Heritage. The Kuwait Prize is designed to recognize intellectual achievements that serve the interest of scientific advancement and support efforts to raise the standard of culture in various fields. Two awards are awarded annually -- one for Kuwaiti citizens and one for citizens of Arab countries. Dr. Bedair was born in Egypt in 1938.
A LED from Dr. Bedair's Lab
Each year, the area of specific specialization varies. This year's award for Applied Sciences was in the area of energy. Dr. Bedair was contacted by Dr. Salah E. Elmaghraby, NC State University Professor Emeritus and former winner of the Kuwait Prize, about submitting for the Kuwait Prize. Dr. Elmaghraby worked with Dr. Bedair to submit the necessary packages needed in order to be considered.
"This is a very competitive award, because it's the Nobel Prize for people of Arab origin," explains Dr. Bedair. "There are three million people of Arab origin throughout the world and some of them are leading scientist in their fields, including Energy. So to be awarded this award is very prestigious."
"Winning this award will allow me to interact more in the area and location where the potential of solar application is tremendous," says Dr. Bedair. This area is a belt that extends through the southern part of Egypt, Libya, and Saudi Arabia. The solar influence is the highest of any region in the world.
Dr. Bedair pioneered the development of multi-junction solar cells and has made significant contributions to light emitting diodes -- an important energy saving lighting technology. Dr. Bedair has also made an impact in the development of low power electronic devices.
Dr. Bedair's display on the history of light
After receiving his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Alexandria University in 1960, Dr. Bedair received a M.S. in Nuclear Engineering, and Ph.D. in Engineering Science from University of California Berkeley in 1965 and 1969 respectively. "I have a very strange background, sometimes maybe a contradicting background," says Dr. Bedair, "I started my career as an Electrical Engineer and then I received my Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering. I then worked as a Nuclear Engineer for about ten years. I then left Nuclear Engineering and worked in semi-conductors. And this has led me to work in solar cell light emitting diodes and other components of devices that can use energy and save energy."