Number 1 for R&D investment; Clearly see the water; Promoting trade with Egypt and Morocco; and much more!
by: Michael Ordman
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Center for Translational Medicine
Rambam Health Care and Israel’s Technion Institute have established the Wolfe Center for Translational Medicine and Engineering. Doctors, scientists, and engineers will work together from bench to bedside, translating research into tools and train the next generation of doctors and engineers.
Israel’s first organoid bank
Israel’s Hadassah University Medical Center in Ein Kerem has established Israel’s first organoid (mini organs) bank. The 3D multicellular structures are grown from stem cells and can be used in personalized transplant operations.
Moving further in brain research
Twenty months ago (see here previously) scientists at Israel’s Technion Institute discovered how neurons in the brain stored memories of how to make the body move. Now they have identified what parts of the neuron (dendrites and axons) are responsible, and the sequence in which they work.
Healing after sinus surgery
The ArchSinus from Israel’s StStent (see here previously) improves the healing process for patients who undergo functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) to cure chronic sinusitis. The flexible stent (funded via ExitValley – see here) has undergone successful clinical trials in Israel and the US.
European approval for gastric cancer detection
Israel’s Ibex Medical (see here previously) has received the CE Mark for its Galen Gastric system, to detect gastrointestinal cancer – one of the most common malignant diseases worldwide, with over a million new cases every year and relatively poor prognosis.
Sniffing out cancer
Israeli biotechnology startup SpotitEarly is developing a technique for early detection of cancer (lung, prostate, breast, and colon). Trained dogs sniff the patient’s breath and within seconds an AI system gives the result. SpoitEarly is conducting extensive trials at Israel’s Sourasky and Hadassah hospitals.
Feel young to stay young
Researchers from Israel’s Bar-Ilan University have proved the saying “You’re only as young as you feel”. They tracked 194 Israelis aged 73-84 rehabilitating from osteoporotic fractures or stroke. Patients who felt younger (their subjective age) at admission had better functional independence at discharge.
Saving a life at their own gym
Two volunteer paramedic EMTs from Israeli NGO United Hatzalah were very familiar with the location they were sent to save a heart-attack sufferer. It was the gym where they frequently worked out. They arrived to find a trainer performing CPR. They soon had the patient’s heart “up and running”.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Promoting rights at the UN of people with disabilities
Israel and Germany joined forces to host an event at the United Nations to promote the rights of people with disabilities. They sent a strong message to the international community regarding the ability of sports to connect communities and individuals.
Climb every mountain
Danielle Wolfson, the first Israeli woman to climb Mt Everest (see here previously), is now aiming for Mt Denali, the highest peak in North America. She has already scaled Mt Elbrus, the highest peak in Europe. Danielle is sponsored by Israeli air-conditioner manufacturer Tadiran.
The first female combat brigade commander
The IDF has appointed the first woman to command a brigade. Colonel Reut Rettig-Weiss will command the 99th Division’s Artillery Brigade. She was previously the first woman to become battalion commander of the IDF’s Artillery Corps’ SkyRiders drone unit.
A female Muslim IDF officer
Very interesting to watch this video about Ella Waweya. Interviewed by Yoseph Haddad in Arabic with English subtitles, Ella is the ideal spokesperson to emphasize that Israel is an amazing inclusive country for all its minorities.
A coexistence garden
300+ Arab and Jewish Israeli children have created a sustainable garden at the Al-Hayat School in the Israeli Arab town of Kfar Qassem. Jewish kids from nearby Kfar Saba joined the Kfar Qassem kids in the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation “Green Roofs” project, funded by USAID.
Jews, Moslems & Christians
Israeli archaeologists working in the Negev Bedouin city of Rahat have identified and excavated a 7th century mosque – one of the oldest in the world. It is located 2km from another 7th-century rural mosque that was excavated in 2019 and 5km from a 7th century abandoned monastery.
Number 1 for R&D investment
In the latest IMD World Competitiveness Rankings, Israel is 25th overall of the 63 countries surveyed but World Number One for its total expenditure on Research & Development. Also 2nd for cybersecurity, 3rd for public expenditure on education, and 5th for women with degrees.
Protecting millions in Ghana from floods
The 3D mapping and analysis technology from Israel’s GeoX (see here previously) is being used by a World Bank project to help Ghanaians avoid floods and mudslides. It is also helping design a dam for the Odaw River to protect 4 million people from its repeated floods.
Battling wildfires in Cyprus
Israel is sending two special planes, 17 firefighters, and equipment to Cyprus to help the country combat blazes ravaging the north of the island. The decision was made following a request from the Turkish Cypriot authorities. The fire brigades of Israel, Cyprus, and Greece train together periodically.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Israel Space Olympics
100,000 students from 400 schools nationwide took part in the eighth annual Israel Space Olympics, the flagship educational event of the Israel Space Agency and the Science and Technology Ministry. 20 teams competed in the finals at the Israel Center for Excellence through Education in Jerusalem.
Center for inventors
Israel’s Technion Institute has inaugurated the Mehoudar Center for Inventors. It will help Israeli school children, university students, and faculty members create, build and test engineering prototypes. The center is named after Rafi Mehoudar, the developer of Netafim’s drip irrigation system.
Israeli drones can deliver
As part of the ongoing National Drone Network Initiative Israel’s Innovation Authority has teamed up with Israeli company Strix Drones to test the latest technology for delivery of commercial goods. Drones deliver to automated pick-up points and mailboxes and an app alerts the recipient.
Preventing motorcycle accidents
I24 News video featuring Israel’s Ride Vision (see here previously) which can prevent many of the hundreds of thousands of motorcycle crashes every year.
Reducing road congestion in Jerusalem
Israel’s Axilion (see here previously) has successfully completed a pilot of its X Way Twin system along Rabin Blvd. in Jerusalem. It significantly reduced traffic congestion and emission of pollutants. More sensors will be installed, and tests scheduled.
Engines for robots
The Robotics Engine Platform from Israel’s MOV.AI is to be integrated into autonomous mobile robots being developed by Taiwan’s Qisda. MOV.AI won the “Smart Robotics Innovation Award” in the 2021 AI Breakthrough Awards program.
UK visit to hydrogen charging stations
UK Trade envoy to Israel Lord Ian Austin was in Israel to see EV-Gencell’s unique hydrogen-based hybrid charging stations. It is the world’s only solution for charging electric vehicles without carbon emissions and without relying on the power grid. A UK pilot is now being examined.
Italian water companies visit
22 Italian water utility companies and three Italian engineering firms attended the Israel Water Innovation Technology Summit. They toured Israel’s water desalination, purification, and conservation plants to look for solutions to Italy’s current severe drought.
Clearly see the water
Israel’s Watersight is a joint venture of Mekorot, Israel’s national water company, and Israel’s Newsight Imaging (see here previously). Its Aquaring lab-on-a-chip monitors water’s quality in real time. It uses spectroscopy and AI to detect chemicals, metals, and biological pollutants.
“Eat it All” cauliflower
The iStem no-waste cauliflower from Israel’s Syngenta Seeds won the bronze trophy in Fruit Logistica’s prestigious Innovation Awards. iStem is the first edible stem cauliflower – the sweet, high fiber, high yield, nutritious vegetable can be eaten whole, with no preparation.
Hebrew University of Jerusalem scientists have developed a method to manufacture dried pasta sheets, which are “preprogrammed” to mold into a 3D shape upon boiling. The self-morphing technology has the potential to save costs and transform the entire pasta industry.
Protecting crops from disease
Israel’s CropX (see here previously) now monitors crops for up to 320 crop and fungal disease combinations. It advises farmers when best to spray, reducing costs and overuse of harmful chemicals. CropX has thousands of customers in over 50 countries.
Products from recycled plastic bags
Israel’s Alkemy (see here previously) is acquiring Germany’s oceansix, to incorporate its technology for generating products from recovered materials. The deal fits perfectly with Alkemy’s unique “waste to product” process for recycling plastic bags and plastic sheets.
The most innovative startup
Israel’s Talon Cyber Security (see here previously) won the Innovation Sandbox Contest at the 2022 RSA Conference for information security in San Francisco. The contest is considered the leading platform for showcasing groundbreaking technologies that could transform the cybersecurity industry.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
The most building starts in 27 years
There were 68,970 building starts in Israel between April 2021 and March 2022, up from 63,274 in 2021 and the highest figure since 1995. In the year to March 2022, there were 159,900 new homes under construction in Israel – an all-time record.
Promoting trade with Egypt and Morocco
For the first time in about a decade, an Egyptian delegation of 12 textiles and clothing industrialists and businesspeople met senior officials and business leaders in Israel. Meanwhile Israeli Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked flew to Morocco to invite Arab nurses to Israel.
The first Israeli company to be registered in Dubai
Israel’s Rapyd (see here previously) has been registered at the Dubai International Centre (DIFC) and is set to become the first Israeli company set to be regulated in the UAE. The Dubai Financial Services Authority has granted an in-principle approval to Rapyd.
A million shekels each for 3 energy projects
Israel’s Ministry of Energy and the Israel Innovation Authority have awarded a total of NIS 3.3 million to three Israeli startups. They are Augwind (compressed air energy storage), ZOOZ Power (previously Chakratec – EV charging), and Seosol (drone scans to check solar panels).
More funds investing in Israeli startups
US based Vine Ventures has opened a new office in Tel Aviv’s Sarona Market and said it will invest half of its new $140 million fund in Israeli startups. Meanwhile, the unrelated Sarona Ventures has launched a new $20 million fund focused on early-stage Israeli startups.
Samsung invests in Israeli AI
Samsung Ventures has invested in Israeli AI systems and semiconductor startup NeuReality (see here previously). Samsung stated that NeuReality’s technologies “… are critical for the ability to adopt and grow AI solutions.” Israeli crowdfunding platform OurCrowd is also backing NeuReality.
Crowdfunding interest-free loans
The interest-free loans from Israel’s SparkIL support worthy, business opportunities that are good for society. The loans are sourced from altruistic lenders in the US who wish to strengthen small businesses from Israel’s socioeconomic periphery who are underserved by the banks.
Tackling obesity in children
Israel’s Sweet Victory (see here previously) has produced a children’s version of its chewing gum designed to stop sugary treat cravings. Sweet Victory partnered Swiss flavor manufacturer Givaudan to create a supplement that fits kids’ taste buds.
Takeovers, mergers & exits
Israel’s Priority Software (see here previously) has acquired Israel’s SilverByte for NIS 120 million. US telecom giant Comcast is acquiring US-Israeli Levl for around $50 million. Levl will become the basis for Comcast’s first R&D center in Israel. Israel’s Global-e Online is acquiring Borderfree from US Pitney Bowes for $100 million. US-Italian company Leonardo has merged with Israel’s RADA Electronic Industries in a $670 million deal. US Starburst has acquired Israel’s data lake analytics solutions startup Varada for $60 million.
Investment in Israeli startups to 26/6/22:
Lusix raised $90 million; Playmaker raised $40 million; Evinced raised $38 million; Cyberint raised $28 million; SpearUAV raised $17 million; RevealSecurity raised $16 million; Crowdvocate (Base) raised $15 million; Fairtility raised $15 million; Dig.security raised $11 million; Wilco raised $7 million; SpotitEarly raised $6.2 million; Amy raised $6 million; DSG raised $6 million; Sunday Security raised $4 million; Fairgen raised $2.5 million.
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT`
Israeli culture around the world
Israel’s Foreign Ministry, together with The Jerusalem Post, have launched a website “365 Days of Israeli Culture Around the World”. “Our goal in creating this site is to show the positive side of Israel,” said Nurit Tinari, head of the Foreign Ministry’s Cultural Relations Bureau. At last, check it out!
London Design Biennale winner
The Jerusalem Post has just reported that the Israeli Pavilion’s exhibit “The Boiler Room” won the Public Medal at the third London Design Biennale at Somerset House in London. The Biennale took place last year and the exhibit is now on display at the Holon Museum of Design in Israel.
More gold for Israeli para-swimmer
Last week Israel’s Ami Dadaon won the 50-meter freestyle at the Para Swimming World Championships in Portugal, setting a new world record. He continued his success this week, winning gold medals in the150-meter individual medley and 200-meter freestyle.
Gold medal gymnasts
16-year-old Israeli gymnast Daria Atmanov won a gold medal and three silvers at the European Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Tel Aviv. The Israeli team also won a gold medal in the group competition.
THE JEWISH STATE
Whatever happened to Judea & Samaria?
Excellent video explaining how the name “West Bank” originated.
Clouds, cactus, color, crowds, and cats
As you can “see” there were many atmospheric photo opportunities beginning with the letter “C” on Jerusalem’s streets last week.
Coming of age in Netanya
Emunah Bet Elazraki Children’s Home was the venue for a mass bar-bat mitzvah event the likes of which had never been seen before in Netanya. While organizing the event, many of the women volunteers realized that they also never had a bat mitvah. They proved that it is never too late!
Bag of diamonds found at recycling plant
A Ramat Gan company found an unusual way to reduce its carbon footprint. It dropped a bag of diamonds into the recycling bin. Employees contacted the Hiriya Recycling Park who located the refuge truck. A scan revealed the diamonds, which were returned to their grateful owners.