Prof. Arafat is the senior director of the Research and Innovation Center for Graphene and 2D Materials (RIC-2D) and professor of chemical engineering at Khalifa University (KU) in Abu Dhabi, UAE, where he is working since 2010. His current research interests include membrane-based desalination and the development of novel membranes for water applications.
He is also an expert on “sustainable desalination”, an approach that integrates multiple interdisciplinary tools to enhance the prospects of deploying desalination for achieving water and food security. The sustainable desalination concept was first introduced in 2017 in Prof. Arafat’s book: “Desalination Sustainability: A Technical, Socioeconomic and Environmental Approach”. Prof. Arafat received a Ph.D. and BSc in Chemical Engineering from the Univ. of Cincinnati (USA) (2000) and the Univ. of Jordan (1996), respectively. From 2000 to 2003, he worked at Argonne National Laboratory (USA) on separation processes development for nuclear waste treatment. Between 2003 and 2010, he was a faculty member of the Chem. Eng. Dept. at An-Najah University (Palestinian Territory). Between 2009 and 2012, he served as an adjunct associate professor of the Biological Eng. Dept. at Utah State Univ. (USA) and in 2010, he spent six months as a visiting professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA). Between 2018 and 2022, he was the director of the Center for Membranes and Advanced Water Technology (CMAT) at KU. He is a recipient of several prestigious research fellowships by the US National Academy of Science (USA), the Open Society Foundation (USA) and DAAD (Germany). Through his career thus far, he supervised 58 postdoctoral fellows and graduate students and received 29 research grants, totaling more than $16M. His research was published in 280+ book chapters, journal papers, and conference presentations, in addition to two US patents. He was invited to deliver over 60 keynote and invited talks worldwide. Among other honors, Prof. Arafat received the Khalifa Award for Education, presented by the President of UAE, the Mohammad Bin Rashid Medal for Scientific Excellence, presented by the Prime Minister of UAE, the United States Department of Energy Secretarial Honor Award, the Mondialogo Engineering Award by Daimler AG and UNESCO, and the Univ. of Cincinnati Distinguished Dissertation Fellowship. He is a member of the selection committees of the prestigious Zayed Sustainability Prize and the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Water Award. In 2021, he was granted the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Citizenship by nomination of the UAE’s Prime Minister Office in recognition of his accomplishments and service to the UAE.