Our research and demonstration station boasts 100 hectares of land in Academic City, 25 km south of central Dubai.
A total of 35 hectares of this land is designated for applied research on irrigated agriculture. Our scientists conduct experiments using different types of water from relatively high-quality water with low salinity (2,000 ppm) to saline water (20,000 ppm) to sea water (40,000 ppm) to treated wastewater. Mixing water of low and high salinity in different proportions provides us with a range of levels of salinity from moderate to extreme - a unique capacity unmatched in the Gulf region. The land allocated for irrigated agriculture is divided into 14 blocks, 2.5 ha each, so that field salinity control can be achieved up to the plot level. Our computer-controlled SCADA system makes it possible to control the quantity and salinity of irrigation water applied to any part of the experimental plots. Water can be applied by sprinkler, drip, bubbler or traveling irrigator systems, allowing scientists to replicate a wide range of current irrigation practices. Plots irrigated with low salinity water are allocated for plant propagation and seed multiplication.
Our head office, laboratories and training facilities are spread out on an area of 30 ha. They include central analytical laboratory; plant genetic resources laboratory; plant biotechnology laboratory; gene bank; training facilities; greenhouses and shade house; and soil museum.
- Our central analytical laboratory provides high-quality laboratory services in chemical, physical, engineering and nutritional analysis of soil, water and other materials using internationally recognized standards and procedures.
- The plant genetic resources laboratory is suited to performing research activities related to seed conservation, distribution and documentation. It is equipped with technology to determine moisture content, assess seed purity, test germination and pack seeds.
- The plant biotechnology laboratory is used for research into different aspects of plant molecular biology and genetic engineering, including gene discovery and generation of new crops tolerant of abiotic stress.
- Our gene bank holds more than 12,000 accessions of about 220 species of salt-tolerant plants from around 130 countries.
- Our training facilities include multifunctional meeting and training rooms equipped with state-of-the-art technologies.
- We have four air-conditioned greenhouses and a shade house to provide climate-controlled conditions for plant experiments and to facilitate the transfer of plants between environments.
- Our soil museum showcases landscapes and soil diversity from around the world. The museum's main purpose is to raise awareness about the importance of different soils for food production.
About 35 ha of the land allocated to ICBA remains untouched, providing a valuable resource for studies of the indigenous flora and fauna.