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November 26, 2015 / 14 Kislev, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘technology’

PM Netanyahu to Meet Italian PM, Visit Expo 2015 in Milan

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is on his way to Italy, where he is scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and also to visit Expo 2015 in Milan.

The expo is the venue for the agricultural and food industry in Europe.

A long list of world leaders have already made their way to the trade show, whose them is ‘Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.” Included among the honored visitors thus far have been Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel as well as the presidents of France, Russia, Austria, Ireland, Mexico and Colombia.

Netanyahu will first visit the pavilion presented by the State of Israel, and then several others, including those representing Italy, the United States and China.

The Israeli pavilion introduces the world to technological developments and innovative systems that Israel uses on a daily basis. The pavilion itself was built with advanced tools based on ‘green technology,’ including energy-saving devices and special water and air equipment.

The pavilion also displays the unique character of the State of Israel, albeit with its special emphasis on advanced agriculture and technology. It presents Israel’s historical and cultural values, and its agricultural heritage from Biblical times to the present.

The entire pavilion is environment-friendly and recyclable without impact on the environment. The vertical Fields of Tomorrow is a demonstration of Israel’s abilities in various areas including the cultivation of rocky land, growth of vegetables in the desert, new methods of irrigation and improvement of seed quality.

4G Cell Service Arrives in Israel

Sunday, August 9th, 2015

The Communications Ministry this week finally distributed 4G frequencies to cellular companies in Israel after months of delays.

Partner Communications (formerly Orange), Pelephone, and HOT Mobile will begin to offer 4G services to their customers within the next few days, according to a release to media.

Golan Telecom and Cellcom are not yet able to offer the advanced 4G network service until they first resolve a joint technical problem, since the two share the same network.

Qualcomm Co-Founder Donates $50 Million to Technion

Monday, June 15th, 2015

Qualcomm cofounder Prof. Andrew Viterbi said he is donating $50 million to the Faculty of Electrical Engineering at the Technion.

Viterbi, a native of Italy who grew up in the United States, has donated to Technion in the past, but the new grant makes him the university’s largest private donor.

This is not Viterbi’s first donation to the Technion, but it is his largest.

He co-founded the Qualcomm chip company and invented the Viterbi Algorithm for decoding signals.

Prof. Viterbi’s visisted and lectured at Technion in 1967, when he was on Sabbatical from UCLA, and he was granted an honorary Doctorate in 2000, when also was named a Technion Distinguished Visiting Professor of Electrical Engineering.

Technion President Prof. Peretz Lavie said:

This is the greatest honor for a professor at the Technion, and has been granted up until now to only six people, three of whom were Nobel Prize winners. The degree enables Viterbi to come to the Technion whenever he wants, and there was a period when he visited here every year.

Viterbi said after announcing the latest donation, “Technion electrical engineering graduates are in large part responsible for creating and sustaining Israel’s high-tech industry, which has been essential for Israel’s economic success.”
Technion graduates have been responsible for founding and managing 1,602 high-tech companies, he added.
The grant will enable Technion to enlarge the Faculty of Electrical Engineering.

Agritech Startups Showcase Technologies at AgriVest Conference

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Some of the most promising and innovative Israeli agritech startups pitched their technologies yesterday (April 27) at the third International AgriVest Conference held at the Weizmann Institute of Science.

The conference is an initiative of Invest in Israel, the investment promotion center at the Israeli Ministry of Economy, the Trendlines Group and Trendlines Agtech.

Some 350 business people, entrepreneurs, government officials, scientists and investors from Israel and abroad attended the conference.

In her opening remarks, Dr. Nitza Kardish, CEO of Trendlines Agtech called the AgriVest conference “a unique platform for Israeli startups and entrepreneurs to meet with investors and key people in the global agricultural industry.” Kardish said the gathering provided a place to “reveal the potential of investing in innovative developments.”

Chairman and CEO of the Trendlines Group Steve Rhodes added, “The global growth of investment in agritech 2014 reached a record breaking $2.36 billion raised which is testimony to positive trends in this sphere.”

The highlight of the conference was a competition between 12 Israeli startups out of 40 that applied for the privilege, who presented the newest innovations in Israel’s agricultural technology.

At the event DouxMax was crowned the winner following assessment and grading by the participants.

DouxMax has developed a method to create special, sweeter sugar in an effort to reduce the amount of sugar required in foods.

BioFishency, developers of an all-in-one water treatment system for land-based aquaculture was also awarded a prize for its system to increase the number of fish threefold while reducing water usage.

“AgriVest showcases technologies that will enable us to produce unique foodstuffs, additives, seeds and agricultural products to combat the stress on our dwindling natural resources,” said Gideon Soesman, co-founder and managing partner of GreenSoil Investments.

“Investing in new crops, treatment methods, waste reduction and yield enhancement will provide solutions to the world’s food crisis and can deliver sizable returns to investors.”

Lessons Learned from the 2014 Gaza War with Hamas

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

The IDF has been carefully analyzing the enormous amount of data collected from the soldiers’ experiences fighting in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, the Mako website reports.

One of the most important lessons learned from the troops’ combat in the enclave was related to the weight of the load ground soldiers carried with them into battle.

Soldiers carry a rocket launcher weighing some 10 kilograms, for example; the Technological Division of the IDF Ground Arm worked together with the security industry to reduce that weight to seven kilos instead.

Negev machine guns, Tavor and M-16 rifles use 5.56 mm caliber ammunition. Each bullet weighs 12 grams; but with new technology, those bullets will weigh 30 percent less. MAG machine guns may be phased out and the lighter Negev machine guns may replace them. Or they may receive lighter ammunition.


US Dept of Defense Trains Teachers in 3-D Printing

Friday, December 19th, 2014

The U.S. Department of Defense is teaching America’s teachers how to use 3-D technology to “print” solid objects, according to a report on NJTV.

The workshops are led by engineers who teach the teachers to use Mak-Bot printers with various materials, each relevant to the object being created by the 3-D printer. The purpose of the program, according to the report, is to ensure the next generation will be educated properly in the technology, which is already available.

The medical field is also experimenting with 3-D printing for the creation of human tissue and organs in life-saving transplant surgeries and other situations.

Jerusalem Says ‘No’ to Oil Shale Pilot – Is There A Future Elsewhere in Israel?

Sunday, September 7th, 2014

Israeli society is debating whether to allow industrialists to dip into its Middle Eastern treasure chest for the oil shale that lies beneath the holy land, while the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) waits in the wings for the outcome.

Oil shale is most commonly defined as sedimentary rock containing organic matter rich in hydrogen, known as Kerogen. When the rock is heated, the organic matter decomposes and releases petroleum-like liquids. In other words, black gold.

Industrialists and business investors say the move would bring energy independence to the Jewish State, which made its debut last week as an energy exporter with a deal to send natural gas to Jordan.

Environmentalists insist it would create an ecological disaster from which the nation’s delicate nature reserves might never recover.

A pilot project would determine whether the benefit outweighs the risk, or vice versa.

But last week, a committee voted in Jerusalem to block a pilot project in south-central Israel to check it out. An exploration that began in 2011 estimated that approximately 40 billion barrels of oil are sitting below the surface of the Ela Valley at a depth of approximately 200 to 400 meters.

After having started an initial exploration several years ago — one that was frozen in 2011 — the Jerusalem-based Israel Energy Initiatives firm wanted to move to a pilot project to determine its viability. The plan involved extracting a total of 500 barrels of oil — about two barrels per day — to see if the site was commercially viable.

The process that would be used involves a new technology never before used anywhere else in the world. It’s not “fracking,” which involves drilling for liquid oil.

This involves converting the very rock itself into oil – a form of hydrocarbons — known as “oil shale.” There is a massive amount of it in Israel, apparently, if one can figure out how to extract it and it seems that IEI chief scientist Harold Vinegar has managed to do it. The company’s former Minister of National Infrastructure and now IEI CEO, Effie Eitam, is also very involved.

In order to bring up oil shale, one drills heating wells into the rock, gradually heating it to 300 degrees centigrade over a period of nine months, which then separates and lifts the oil and leaves the rock below.

IEI said the process would not damage the ecosystem in the 238-square kilometer Shfela basin area.

About 200 meters of rock separates the layer of shale rock from the aquifer in the region, according to IEI, which insists drilling will not penetrate this layer. As a result, the company says, the aquifer will not be harmed. Israel’s Water Authority hydrologists agreed.

But environmentalists disagree.

Adam Teva V’Din – the Israel Union for Environmental Defense — argued in a 2010 lawsuit that the company’s plans did not have enough environmental protections in place. Regulations tightened in 2012 by the National Infrastructure, Energy and Water Ministry still did not cover the company’s plans – so Adam Teva V’Din filed another lawsuit.

Israel’s Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel also threw its support to the opposition, adding that the company’s plans seemed to be “shrouded in secrecy.”

Last week, the Jerusalem District Committee for Planning and Building voted 10-1 to reject the Jerusalem-based Israel Energy Initiatives’ project to drill for oil shale in the Shfela basin. There were two abstentions in the 10-hour committee meeting vote, which was a continuation of August’s unresolved nine-hour discussion.

Had the exploration gone forward, IEI CEO Relik Shafir told The Jerusalem Post in an interview this summer, the project had the potential to bring Israel “energy independence and a commercial value … to the tune of at least NIS 10 billion a year.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/jerusalem-says-no-to-oil-shale-pilot-is-there-a-future-elsewhere-in-israel/2014/09/07/

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