NASA names asteroid after star Saudi student

Updated 14 January 2016
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NASA names asteroid after star Saudi student

RIYADH: Abdul Jabbar Al-Hamood, a champion at the Intel ISEF 2015 global science competition, was honored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) by naming a recently discovered main belt asteroid after him.
The asteroid has been named “31926 Alhamood”, which was discovered on April 5, 2000 by the Lincoln Laboratory Near-Earth Asteroid Research Team, according to a page on website of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Main belt asteroids are found in the region of the solar system falling roughly between the planets Mars and Jupiter, where the greatest concentration of asteroid orbits can be found, according to Science Daily.com and Wikipedia.
The rare honor for Al-Hamood was also announced by the Ministry of Education (MoE).
“Abdul Jabbar Al-Hamood received a unique honor in that NASA decided to name a new planet discovered by its research team at the Lincoln Labs in New Mexico as ‘Hamood’ to acknowledge his rare success in scientific research by winning first place in the global Intel ISEF program on the new scientific revolution in the field of bio-botany,” the MoE said in a tweet.
Al-Hamood, 17, last year won the rare accolade for the best scientific research in the world at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF-2015) in Pittsburgh, and he is the first Saudi student to achieve this position in the global competition.
The Intel ISEF program, by the Society for Science and the Public, is the world’s largest international pre-university science competition, where more than 1,700 students are shortlisted from about 70 countries participating to showcase their independent research and compete for more than $5 million in prizes.
Besides being judged the best among the winners in botany, Al-Hamood was also given a special award qualifying him to attend the Nobel Prize ceremony in Sweden.
Al-Hamood did an experiment using the TRV virus in genetic engineering, and his project was applied to 450 typical plants and more than 50 tomato plants.
Currently pursuing his bachelor’s degree at Boston University, he is from Qatif in the Eastern Province and attended the Dhahran Ahliyya Schools in Dhahran.
Millions of students worldwide compete each year in local and school-sponsored science fairs and the winners of these events go on to participate in SSP-affiliated regional-level fairs from where the best among them win the chance to attend Intel ISEF.


EXCLUSIVE: Arab News interview with Serie A President Gaetano Micciche ahead of Supercoppa Italiana in Jeddah

Updated 2 min 6 sec ago
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EXCLUSIVE: Arab News interview with Serie A President Gaetano Micciche ahead of Supercoppa Italiana in Jeddah

Abdulaziz Al-Aquil JEDDAH: From day one, Serie A President Gaetano Micciche has been a staunch defender of Saudi Arabia playing host to the Italian Super Cup. With the kick-off now mere hours away at King Abdullah Sports City stadium in Jeddah, his good faith has been rewarded.
“We have had great hospitality,” he said. “I am really glad to experience Saudi Arabia not only for myself, but for all Italian people that have arrived here for the first time. The Saudi public has been full of kindness for the Italian people. It is a great honor for Serie A and myself to be here for such an important event.”
In an exclusive interview with Arab News, the Serie A chief discussed his thoughts his impressions on Jeddah and the event.
“I am happy because I now have a fair impression of the situation here,” he said. “I will surely be returning to Italy full of satisfaction and with positive ideas to return in the near future with other matches. All of the responses that I have seen have been very positive. Jeddah is a city that is rapidly evolving. It is really interesting for me and I have no doubt that there is a large and great potentiality for Jeddah to grow in the years to come.”
Micciche said he was delighted to find such a modern and beautifully built stadium.
King Abdullah Sports City (KASC), also known as “Al Jawhara,” Arabic for “jewel,” is the largest football stadium in Jeddah, with a maximum capacity of more than 62,000.
“I was happy to see the complex, which is one of the most beautiful in the world,” he said.
“I was especially happy to learn that the stadium has been completely sold out and that more than 15,000 women will be attending. I believe that sport in general, and football in particular, is a special factor of life. Today, two of the best Italian teams will be playing and I am sure they will put on a great match. I repeat: I am happy with all the organization, with the city, with the people, and with the hospitality.”