Invited Talks

Isam Shahrour, Distinguished Professor at University of Lille – France

What do we know about Smart Cities Concept and Implementation?

The Smart City concept becomes a major concern for public authorities as well as for private and academic sectors. Hundreds of projects are launched in the world to build smart cities with the objective to use both digital and social innovations to improve the quality of life for citizens and to implement new ways for effective cities’ management.
Many cities are interested by this concept, but they want to learn more about this concept in sharing feedback concerning: Smart City implementation process, governance, barriers, effective cost, economic model, impacts on improving life quality and city management, success stories, inspiring failure stories, …
This conference aims at providing a synthesis of works conducted on smart Cities, with a focus on lessons learned from Smart City implementations.



Gilles Betis, IEEE Smart City Initiative Chair, France

Open Data, a new common for the development of the Smart Territories

A smart city brings together technology, government and society to enable a smart economy, a smart mobility, a smart environment, a smart governance, but also smart people and smart living. Commons are providing key shared resources to increase value creation while financial resources are decreasing in many cities in the world.



José Ignacio Castillo Velázquez, Autonomous University of Mexico City, Mexico

Smart Cities as technology integrators: A holistic view

UN estimates 9,000 million people in earth for 2050, so many infrastructure problems must be solved in order to provide goods and services for feed, living, health, education, transport, energy, water, waste recollection, security, recreation, etc. Given the fast-growing population and recurrent global crisis due to natural resources, the idea of kind cities with environment offered a popular term “sustainable cities”. In order to get sustainable cities, its needs would be covered using IT&C providing different grades of intelligence to the management of services and infrastructure of a city, only then a city could be qualified as a smart city. Smart Cities are the great integrator of technologies such as Smart Grid, Internet of Things, Big Data, Cloud Computing, Cyber Security & Data Centers.
Participants could obtain a wide approach about Smart cities from academic and industrial point of view, and how the IEEE initiatives are integrated.



Fadi Dornaika, Professor, IKERBASQUE, Spain

Contribution to machine learning tools: Applications to visual data analysis

The first part of the talk addresses some of my recent contributions to graph construction and semi-supervised learning.
Data driven graphs and semi-supervised learning constitute a cornerstone of many machine learning algorithms.
More precisely, we have introduced a Two phase weighted Regularized Least square method which provides adaptive and informative graphs. We have also proposed inductive and flexible schemes for graph-based semi-supervised learning that provide non-linear projections. The performance of the proposed methods is studied on real image datasets including faces and objects. The second part of the talk will briefly present some of my recent works that exploit machine learning tools for visual data analysis. These are as follows: object detection in aerial images, vision-based vehicle localization, parking lot occupancy detection, image based age estimation, Assessing face attractiveness, Five Psychology Traits from videos, and Job Candidate screening from videos.



Yahia Antar, Canada Research Chair in Electromagnetic Engineering, IEEE AP-S DL, Royal Military college of Canada and Queen’s University

Overview of Some Recent Advances and Future Trends in Antenna Research

Many aspects of our lives and economies are becoming fundamentally dependent on wireless technology in a manner that they were not before. This trend is exemplified by the massive investment in future endavours, such as 5G technology. Many in IEEE believe 5G will become the cornerstone of future wireless networks, enabling fundamentally new applications. These include the internet of things (IOT), with its anticipated billions of devices laden with embedded sensors. A common denominator in many of the new wireless applications is the antenna systems, which form the “eyes and ears” of many sensors. New developments for advancing the state of the art in antenna technology and associated microwave and millimeter wave circuits to meet future challenges will be needed.
This talk will address some current and new directions of research in the antenna area. This also includes new fundamental approaches for antenna analysis, the near fields and energy around antenna systems, and possible implications on future antenna systems design, in what is expected to be an increasingly crowded electromagnetic environment.



Bander Allaf, Chair, IEEE PES Western Saudi Arabia, CEO, Juffali Energy & Utilities

Competitiveness of Solar Energy Applications in Middle East

Electricity demand in Middle East is rising rapidly due to the fast population growth and the increase of per capita consumption. The challenge for the grid management will be the huge difference between peak demand and required base load. Especially during summer in the afternoons, the peak demand is very high due to heat ventilation and air conditioning.
Many counties in MENA region have already started the diversification of the energy mix and to introduce solar energy as a major part of it. MENA has abundant solar resources which allow for very cost-efficient electricity generation and fuel savings with suitable solar energy technologies.
Solar energy has become a compelling case now, only because the cost of generating that energy has dramatically come down in the recent period whereas the cost of producing electricity using alternative fuels such as oil has remained the same or has increased (even if only marginally) and in the case of gas has possibly come down due to lower gas prices but even then not sufficiently when comparing solar energy for the time of day when the sun is shining.
The presentation will discuss the following topics:

  • Solar Technologies:
    1. Photovoltaic
    2. Concentrated Solar Power
  • Solar Energy Programs in Middle East
  • Case Studies
  • Challenges that could limit the renewable energy trading in Middle East
  • How renewable energy can develop the local economy in Middle East?



Omar Ramahi, Professor, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Electrically-Small Resonators as a Lego for Electromagnetic Systems

When Smith, Pendry and others started tinkering with split-ring resonators (SRR) for realizing double negative media, little did we know then that these earlier ground breaking works ushered the beginning of a completely different perspective on designing all types of electromagnetics-based systems. The SRR, or any other resonator that has dimensions much smaller than the wavelength were used as the building blocks for single and double negative media and even near-zero media. While these exotic media enabled cloaking and design of dispersion-controlled media, the applications were largely limited. The concept of a building block, however, might hold the key to a much larger class of designs and applications. Back in the seventeenth century, Huygens conceived the idea of elementary sources as forming the radiated or scattered field. His extraordinary perception of the mechanism of the wave phenomenon preceded the full-fledged development of Maxwell equations by more than 150 years. While Huygens work was an attempt to understand the wave phenomenon through analysis, we pose the question of whether we can extend the concept of building blocks or elementary sources to synthesize electromagnetics based radiating systems.
If all things in nature are composed of identical building blocks, can we conceive of a similar construction of electromagnetics systems in general?
In this talk, I will focus on the importance of understanding what is meant by metamaterial, metasurface particles or electrically-small resonators in general. Unlike building blocks used for other physical systemsthat are not founded on the action-at-a-distance phenomena, the electrically-small resonators, or electromagnetic Legos are more intriguing as their strong coupling needs to be tailored to ensure their desired operation. Several new designs of electromagnetics systems from lenses, to sensors and antennas will be discussed in details covering a broad range of activities conducted in my research group at Waterloo. Focusing on the concept of a building block will naturally reignite strong interest in understanding the fundamental physical phenomenon of radiation and hopefully would lead to asking important questions that wereconsidered of secondary importance in earlier times.



Mohammad S. Sharawi, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM), Dhahran, Saudi Arabia

MIMO Antenna System Designs for 4G and 5G Applications: Current Status and Future Forecast

The fourth generation (4G) wireless standard has provided people all over the world with real time video and data streaming as compared to its predecessor. A large leap in the achieved data rates and transmission speeds was marked. Such high speeds are a consequence of several enabling technologies that were adopted such as modulation, multiplexing and coding techniques as well as the use of multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO) systems. It took MIMO almost two decades to mature and impact wireless technology. The major advantage of MIMO technology is its ability to make use of the multipath problem that degraded the performance of previous wireless single-input-single-output (SISO) systems. The ability to send multiple streams of data at the same time to enhance the achieved data rates was a major milestone for the wireless industry utilizing MIMO.
A major component in MIMO systems in modern wireless devices is the antenna system. Unlike other antenna systems, the design of MIMO antenna systems has a lot of challenges that need to be addressed. In this talk, we will examine the aspects of designing MIMO antenna systems for wireless handheld terminals, access points and base-stations, evaluating their performance and discussing the challenges encountered when integrating multiple antennas in close proximity. Several practical examples and recent advancements of such antenna system designs will be discussed. The prospects of using MIMO in the upcoming 5G standard and integrating it with the new enabling technologies that will be trying to achieve the anticipated 1000 times increase in the system capacity by 2020 when comparing it with 4G will be discussed in details through several examples.



Mohamed El-Hadidy, Associate Professor, CST Middle East, Egypt

EM Simulation State of the Art for Signal Processing and Enhanced Communication Systems

In this talk a discussion about the EM simulation state of the art for the complete systems considering CST software and Simulia packages. Furthermore, a straight forward applications for EM simulation tools in Signal Processing and Enhanced Communication Systems will be presented as well.



Designed and Developed by Abdel Karim KASSEM
Instructor, Administration | Lebanese University | UIT | CCNE Department