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My National

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Dressing up to work

  |  December 25, 2013

There is something particularly paramount and seminal about a job that requires a uniform. I’m not referring to the shift dresses and stilettos of the city lawyer or the dapper suit and pocket-square of a banker.  I am referring to jobs in which donning a specially-made outfit is a must to ensure a job well done. Nothing screams importance more than a surgeon’s mask or a firefighter’s overalls.

No other field requires as much dressing up as a cleanroom facility. Students of microelectronic engineering at the Masdar Institute in Abu Dhabi will be dressing up and covering up in specially designed uniforms every day to conduct delicate research in semiconductor chips now that the institute’s own facility became fully operational earlier this year.

The opening of the cleanroom heralds a new milestone for the country’s semiconductor ambitions and the significance of the Masdar cleanroom facility will only grow next year because eventually, the oil will run out and the UAE will need other forms of revenue to maintain its economy.

Abu Dhabi’s government has been investing heavily in the semiconductor space, identifying the inevitable growth of the digital space and the need for silicon chips now that 50 billion devices are expected to go online by 2020.

Few seem to understand just how lucrative the digital economy is and will be in the future. But for anyone that has had the privilege of working in a cleanroom facility and spends every day donning the white overalls, covering their hair, foregoing perfume, make up and cigarettes, it is clear that this is where the future is created.


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