Beresheet 2 gets funding

Israel’s SpaceIL has raised $70 million from investors for Beresheet 2 - its second mission to the lunar surface, to launch in 2024. It is the first ever lunar mission attempting to land two small crafts detaching from a mothership. One aims to be only the second craft to land on the far side.

Better optics – just add water

Technion scientists have made a breakthrough discovery in the manufacture of nano-sized precise optical components (e.g., medical imaging). If the component is placed in liquid (water plus glycerol), light slows down, and the component needs to be much larger. It can even be printed on a 3D printer.

Hi-tech in the kindergarten

Israel’s next school year will include a new government program that will include computer science, robotics and other fields of study to equip students for future employment in hi-tech. It will launch in middle-schools and will be integrated into elementary schools and eventually in kindergartens.

Training ex-IDF into hi-tech workers

Israeli non-profit Scale-Up Velocity has launched its Cyber4s program for Israelis finishing IDF combat service. It trains them for a smooth and speedy transition into employment in the hi-tech sector. Its second group of 40 students will graduate mid-July.

Smarter traffic lights

Israel’s ITC – Intelligent Traffic Control (see previously) has now successfully tested its smart traffic light technology in Israel and overseas. In this article, the two Ben Gurion University graduate founders tell their story. The system saves time, fuel, emissions and accidents.

An intelligent water filter

Israel’s Netafim, the world’s pioneer and leading drip irrigation specialist, has launched its AlphaDisc filter to protect irrigation systems against clogging caused by organic contaminants. Its remote sensing system and algorithms also provide farmers with online data and insights.

Breakthrough water technology

Israel’s BlueGreen Water Technologies (see previously) has been named the Global Water Awards “2021 Breakthrough Technology Company of the Year” by Global Water Intelligence (GWI). BlueGreen has transformed cyanobacteria (toxic blue-green algae blooms) treatment.

Green walls to cool buildings

In the first study of its kind, researchers at Israel’s Bar-Ilan University have shown that covering the facades of buildings with plants can reduce temperatures indoors by several degrees in the summer and increase them in winter. The process is called evapotranspiration, which also purifies the air.

Sustainable development

Israel’s Doral Energy (see previously) is partnering Israel’s Technion Institute in green projects. They include the areas of renewable energy, energy storage, integration of agriculture and solar energy, hydrogen production, carbon capture, waste treatment, water, and environmental infrastructure.

Florida-Israel Space Prizes

There were 4 winners of the 2021 Space Florida-Israel Innovation Partnership Program. They include an antenna for satellites (MTI); nanoparticle materials to cool down objects using sunlight; recycling plastic into radiation protection vests; and thermal imaging for microsatellites.