April 16, 2024

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Senior Lecturer, Razak Faculty of Technology and Informatics (RFTI), Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), Ts. Dr. Rozzeta Dolah was one of the nine winners for LÓreal-UNESCO For Women In Science (FWIS) Award. The award was given on 30 November 2022 at Parkroyal Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, together with the other 8 FWIS winners for 2020, 2021, and 2022 by Tomas Haruka, LÓreal Malaysia’s Managing Director.

Her research stood out for mitigating the climate change and global warming. For the first time in 14 years, FWIS 2020 is themed Women for Climate aims to empower women to play a critical role in tackling climate change. The 2020 LÓreal-UNESCO award was very unique focusing on scientist’s effort in mitigating climate change and is different from the past 14 years since the award was initiated in 2006.

The success enabled her to receive a research grant worth RM30,000 to conduct her research on Nano-Characterization for Pyrolysis Oil as Low Carbon Emission Device and Fuel Economizer for Vehicles. FWIS is LÓreal’s annual philanthropy program that aims to shine a spotlight and honor remarkable women whose research contributes to the advancement of society through science. Upon careful deliberation, the jury members unanimously selected Ts. Dr. Rozzeta as she has demonstrated strong project significance and contribution to science backed by a stellar research plan.

Inspired by Greta Thunberg the young Swedish climate activist, Ts. Dr. Rozzeta Dolah, or also known as Dr. Zeta, felt no action is too small to make a difference to fight for climate change. Her accomplishment is utilizing biomass waste such as palm oil empty fruit bunch, pine wood, acacia and bamboo into a cleaner and low carbon emission fuel. The biofuel produced from these wastes is a nanomaterial sized less than 100 nm, known as nanofluid, which is used as a low carbon enabler for vehicles. The discovery has sparked an innovation to produce a nanotechnology-based product such as low carbon emission device and fuel economizer. The products are based on nanofluidics technology, an advanced technology for an edge-cutting invention in Malaysia.

Her passion in this research has led her to become a technopreneur for research commercialization on Dr. Z NanoFuel™ patch, an innovation by her UTM spin-off company; Naglus Industries Sdn. Bhd., which is made scientifically to promote low carbon community for Malaysia and greener world. It works on the nanofludics transport via biomass fluid binded with nanocomposite fiber medium which then being assembled into a patch adhesive.

The patch which attached to the vehicle minimizes the adsorption of fuel impurities thus lead to a complete combustion in the engine. It produce a cleaner emission with low carbon and less particulate matters from the exhaust. The nanomolecule is characterized using Zeta Potential Analyzer which measures the stability of nanoparticles. Zeta potential measures the electrostatic magnitude or charge repulsion and attraction between particles and is one of the fundamental parameters known to affect stability and uniformity of nanoparticles.

Besides being awarded this L’Oréal-UNESCO award For Woman In Science (FWIS) 2020, her research innovation has won her multiple awards such as Malaysia Technology Expo MTE 2020 (Gold Award, Best Category Award for Protection of the Environment, Energy, Water, Wastewater, Sanitation & Green Technology, International Award of Merit from Republic of Croatia), Young Scientists Network member for Academy of Sciences Malaysia 2020 (YSN-ASM), INATEX 2020, and 7th Leaders-in-Innovation Fellowship (LIF7) from Royal Academy of Engineering, United Kingdom.

Her invention has made her Nano-Certified research product with nanoparticle size of less than 20 nm verified by NANOVerify Sdn. Bhd., a subsidiary of NanoMalaysia Berhad. This Nanotechnology Certification Program is operated by NANOVerify Sdn. Bhd., jointly audited by SIRIM QAS International and under the advisory of Standards Malaysia.

Ts. Dr. Rozzeta Dolah was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) United States in MIT Department of Mechanical Engineering under Prof. Rohit Karnik’s Microfluidics and Nanofluidics Research Laboratory. She did her PhD in Mechanical Engineering at Meiji University, Japan and Master in Engineering; M.Eng Mechanical Engineering in Advanced Manufacturing Technology from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM). Apart from that, she also received her undergraduate degree BSc. (Hons) in Chemical Technology from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM).

Her background has enabled her to develop a robust pyrolysis reactor as the alternative fuel for biofuels to produce low carbon emission and anti-pollution device. She welcomes any support from the government and industries on her current research that is tremendously significant. The support is crucial for her to elevate Malaysia’s contribution to the world for climate change effort with her aspiration to be a leader in biomass renewable energy through nanotechnology and to stand tall among world scientist. Nanoscience and nanotechnology are a priority field for today’s innovation leaders. It has become a research priority for many countries including Malaysia.

The L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science was first awarded in 2006 to recognize and promote the works and contributions of women scientists in Malaysia, in partnership with, UNESCO, The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization – a specialized agency of the United Nations aimed at promoting world peace and security through international cooperation in education, the sciences, and culture.

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