Good News Israel Archive from the week of June 12, 2016: Israeli develops WoundClot – a gauze that absorbs 25 times its own weight of blood and forms a coagulating gel membrane on the open wound; Microsoft has inaugurated another research and development center in Israel, and much more.
By: Michael Ordman
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Gauze bandage saves lives
At Ben Gurion University Shani Eliyahu-Gross (now chief scientific officer and senior vice president of Israel’s Core Scientific Creations) developed WoundClot – a gauze that absorbs 25 times its own weight of blood and forms a coagulating gel membrane on the open wound. WoundClot is marketed in the UK by Redhawk Medical.
Why not search for a cure for cancer?
Friends of Israeli Professor Yoram Palti encouraged him to invent Novocure’s electrode treatment for aggressive brain tumors. Now eight years after its first trials, two of Novocure’s original patients are still alive. One of the trials was stopped as it was too successful.
International trauma training
Twenty-six leading healthcare professionals from 20 countries gathered in Haifa to participate in Rambam Medical Center’s Trauma Medicine Course. The course included lectures, workshops and simulations, using Rambam’s vast experience of treating victims of war, terror and accidents.
Successful trial for balloon catheter
Israel’s AV Medical Technologies completed a 30-patient evaluation of its Chameleon angioplasty balloon catheter, demonstrating clear advantages over standard balloon designs. AV Medical plans to launch Chameleon in the USA soon.
Help with falling asleep
Israeli startup 2breathe Technologies has developed a sensor and smartphone app that helps users fall asleep and tracks their sleeping patterns. It plays musical tones in sync with an individual’s breathing pattern. The tones are gradually lengthened, and so users breathe slower and relax.
The gift of life
The day after the dreadful terrorist attack at Tel Aviv’s Sarona Market, I was privileged to be invited to the dedication of an ambulance to Magen David Adom in Netanya. It was the tenth MDA ambulance to be donated thanks to the efforts of the Cockfosters and N. Southgate community of North London.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
Autistic daughter of party leader graduates from IDF
Yair Lapid, head of Israel’s Yesh Atid political party, wrote emotionally on Facebook about his special needs daughter Yaeli who has just finished serving in the IDF. She volunteered for the entire year on a base of the IDF National Search and Rescue Unit.
Microsoft opens R&D center in Nazareth
Software giant Microsoft has inaugurated a research and development center in Nazareth, a city comprising mostly Christian and Muslim Arab-Israelis. It is Microsoft’s third R&D center in Israel, joining Herzliya and Haifa, where already more than 1,000 people are employed.
Druze MK voted as Deputy Speaker
The Knesset House Committee has appointed Member of Knesset (Israel’s Parliament) Hamad Amar as Deputy Knesset Speaker. Amar – of Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party – is a member of Israel’s minority Druze community.
I am an Israeli-Arab
Abdullah Abed al-Rahman, 26, from Abu Ghosh Abdol states, “I am proud to be both Arab and Israeli”. Along with Orthodox Jew Michal Julian, he runs the Facebook page “Right Wing and Arabs Tweeting”, which aims to advance Jewish-Arabic coexistence from a Zionist point of view.
Prior to Ramadan, Israeli authorities installed festive lights and water stations in Eastern Jerusalem and the Old City. They thoroughly cleaned Arab neighborhoods and collected waste, resurfaced roads, organized cultural events and a vendors’ market. Israelis donated hundreds of holiday meals for the needy Arab families via Israeli paramedic organization Magen David Adom.
Heathrow airport considers Ben Gurion security model
London’s Heathrow airport is considering adopting the security system used at Israel’s Ben-Gurion airport, as a preemptive measure against possible ISIS attacks. With at least 12 separate security layers, Ben-Gurion is one of the most secure airports in the world.
Protecting USA army vehicles
The US Army is to protect its Armored Personnel Carriers with the “Iron Fist Light Configuration” active protection system produced by Israel Military Industries. The system uses radar and an electro-optical sensor to detect and intercept a range of incoming missiles and rocket-propelled grenades.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Einstein makes science accessible
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Smithsonian Institution are marking the 100th anniversary of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity by launching “The Einstein Project” – an initiative to make science more accessible to young people. Einstein was a founder of the Hebrew University.
Quantum Science Center
Israel’s Technion Institute has opened the Center for Quantum Science, Matter and Engineering. It will focus on merging fundamental concepts of quantum science with engineering principles in order to pave the way towards new devices and systems for communications, computing, sensing and signal processing.
New planetarium in Netanya
The Israeli city of Netanya has dedicated a $3 million science and space center. The 1,000-square-meter Madarame Planetarium and Meditation Center was largely funded by Japanese businessman and philanthropist Rikoho Madarame.
An enhanced imaging camera
Researchers from Ben Gurion University have developed a more efficient ultra-spectral imaging system. The Miniature Ultra-Spectral Imaging system (MUSI) can enhance remote sensing, environmental research, bio-medicine, medical diagnosis, and industrial fabrication.
Lighting up the State of Georgia
Israeli-owned solar company Energiya has inaugurated the first-ever commercial solar field in the US State of Georgia. The 24-hectare (59-acre) solar power field in Glynn County will produce 22.5 megawatts of electricity.
Innovating mobile infrastructure
Israel’s CellMining won the Mobile Infrastructure Innovation category at the GTB Telecoms Innovation Awards 2016 in London. It recognizes CellMining’s achievement of its customer-experience driven Self-Organizing Networks solution for Israel’s largest mobile operator Cellcom.
It even folds your laundry
An Israeli-led Silicon-Valley-bred robotics startup has invented the FoldiMate – the first appliance to automate the task of folding laundry. It can also steam out wrinkles, perfume, soften and sanitize the clothes. 58,000 have registered interest. Over 2 million have watched the video. Shipping in 2018.
Plant protein for a hungry world
Israeli startup Equinom has devised an algorithm that brings a new level of speed, accuracy and economy to breeding seeds that are superior in yield, nutritional value and appearance. Equinom has already produced hardy high-yield sesame and hardy high-protein legume and quinoa seeds.
Powering broadband from Russia to Myanmar
Leading satellite operator Eutelsat has chosen Israel’s Gilat Satellite Networks to power a new range of broadband services in Western Russia from the Arctic coastline to the Caspian Sea. In addition, Myanmar’s TV station Sky Net selected Gilat’s network for cellular backhaul.
Navigating around Rio
Israeli app Moovit will guide 2 million locals and visitors to the fastest and safest routes to and between competition venues at the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games. Moovit will provide real-time information in 35 languages on buses, trains, subway, light rail, ferries and cable cars. Moovit also has just won the Atlas Award in Tel Aviv for entrepreneurship and creativity.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Fitch is positive about Israel
Rating agency Fitch upgraded Israel’s credit rating outlook to “positive” from “stable” for its foreign currency debt, while retaining its A rating. Israel’s credit rating is likely to be upgraded shortly. Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon hailed the vote of confidence in the Israeli economy.
Foreign investment tripled
Foreign capital flow to Israeli assets hit a record $285.12 billion last year, nearly triple that in 2005 when the failed BDS campaign began. In 2015, Ford, IBM, GE, Tyco, GM, Singtel, PayPal, Yahoo, ProSieben, and Kimberly-Clark bought or invested in Israeli startups.
Yet another record for foreign currency reserves
May saw Israel’s reserves of foreign currency deposits increase by another $779 million from their level at the end of April to 96.463 billion – a new all-time record. The natural gas fund increased to $9.6 billion.
New Zealand’s innovation mission
A delegation of more than 50 business professionals came to Israel for New Zealand’s inaugural Innovation Mission. The executives represented telecommunications, utilities, agriculture, government, finance, education and training.
Just too good a deal to miss
Israel’s Implisit analyzes a company’s incoming emails to forecast potential deals. Implisit itself has now done its biggest ever deal, being bought for tens of millions of dollars by the US giant Salesforce, which already owns two other Israeli startups.
OurCrowd launches crowdfunding app
Israel’s OurCrowd released its new social investor app at FinovateSpring 2016 in San Jose. The app gives investors the ability to make informed investment decisions right from their mobile phone. It supports diligence analysis, deal rooms, expert opinion and real time updates.
Israeli-born head of Brazil’s Central Bank
Israeli-born economist Ilan Goldfajn may help resolve Brazil’s economic crisis. 50-year-old Goldfajn, originally from Haifa, has been confirmed as president of Brazil’s Central Bank. Fluent in Hebrew, English, Portuguese and Spanish, Goldfajn has a doctorate from MIT.
Daily direct flights to San Francisco
Due to strong demand, just two months after launching thrice-weekly direct flights between Tel Aviv and San Francisco, United Airlines said it will increase the frequency of the route. Daily flights will begin on Oct 8, 2016 on Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
Israeli trade delegation visits Egypt
38 Israeli captains of industry went to Egypt for the first time in 10 years. They were warmly welcomed by their Egyptian counterparts, who were enthusiastic about the prospect of increasing trade between the two countries. An Egyptian trade visit to Israel is planned during 2016.
Masschallenge Israel finalists announced
47 Israeli entrepreneurs and startups won through to the finals of MassChallenge Israel. They will benefit from the accelerator’s work space, training, and access to experts worldwide. At a ceremony on Oct 27 prizes of up to NIS 1 million will be awarded.
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT
Hebrew Book Week for the People of the Book
Israel’s National Hebrew Book Week every June features large outdoor book fairs, special Book Week sales at bookstores all around the country, and a variety of events such as music, performances, children’s events, workshops, and storytelling.
Jerusalem Opera Festival
Jun 20-25 is when Verdi’s Rigoletto is being staged at the grand Sultan’s Pool, against the backdrop of Jerusalem’s iconic Old City walls.
The Voice of Music in the Upper Galilee
Now in its 32nd year, “The Voice of Music in the Upper Galilee” July 12-16 features dozens of concerts: chamber, orchestral as well as vocal, informal concerts, meetings with artists, movies and open rehearsals.
http://www.kol-hamusica.org.il/ (click on “English”)
First Israel performances for Larreal Spanish dance troupe
The beautiful show that conquered Europe and USA is coming to Israel for the 1st time. The 17 talented Spanish dancers will perform their new show Estampas de Espana in Tel Aviv, Karmiel, Herzliya, Jerusalem and Haifa from July 19-24.
Tightrope walking over Jerusalem
Every day for the past month UK’s Sky TV has been broadcasting this video of slackliner (tightrope walker) Heather Larsen balancing on a stretched wire between the towers of Jerusalem’s Old City.
You’re having a laugh
Israel’s booth at the Buenos Aires Book Fair was awarded a prize for “originality and creativity.” The booth, almost completely devoid of furniture, included a “factory of laughs” and a “risometer” that measured the power of the visitors’ laughs. Israel won the same prize in 2014.
Israeli wins French Open tennis title
Did newsletter readers spot that one of the winners of the Boys Doubles at the French Open tennis championships at Roland-Garros was Israel’s Yshai Oliel. The 16-year-old left-hander and his Czech partner Patrik Rikl beat their opponents 6-3, 6-4 in the final.
THE JEWISH STATE
Tens of thousands celebrate Jerusalem Day
An amazing sight of the huge numbers of Jews gathered to celebrate Yom Yerushalayim at the Western Wall.
Hasmonean era treasure discovered
Israeli archaeologists in Modi’in have unearthed a hoard of 16 silver coins from the Hasmonean period (126 BCE). The shekels and half-shekels – the property of a Jewish family – were minted in the city of Tyre and bear the images of king Antiochus VII and his brother Demetrius II.
The Righteous Gentiles who settled in Israel
Around 130 individuals found themselves drawn to Israel after rescuing Jews during the Holocaust. 13 are still alive, rarely telling their stories to the media. All of them were born non-Jews and therefore free from persecution by the Nazis. But they put their lives at risk by helping Jews and later immigrated to the Jewish State where they receive the country’s average salary as a monthly stipend.
Another Zionist aboriginal
Ron Evans, the leader of Canada’s Norway House Cree Nation, leads youth missions to Israel. Now Ryan Bellerose, a Métis aboriginal from Northern Alberta, has co-founded Calgary United with Israel, which advocates “for the wellness and security of Jews and their national homeland.”
When Yeshiva boys hosted CP friends
A recent Sabbath in Yeshivat Birkat Moshe in Ma’ale Adumim was extra special when the boys invited the members of Ezer Mizion’s Matan Club for Young Adults with Special Needs to join them. Even those with severe Cerebral Palsy were an integral part of the celebrations.
From Hezbollah to the IDF
Read about Rabbi Avraham Sinai and his amazing journey from Hezbollah terrorist to Israeli Rabbi. Now his son Amos, who was born in Lebanon, has received a citation for distinguished service in the IDF’s Golani Brigade.
On Memorial Day he saved a life
On Israel’s Memorial Day (Yom HaZikaron) David Sarel was mourning his brother Maj. Benaya Sarel, who was killed in Operation Protective Edge in 2014. Then he got a call from Ezer Mizion. His DNA matched a patient who needed a bone marrow transplant. David agreed to donate.
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