“We are proud to provide this technological breakthrough and become partners in one of the most exciting experiments of mankind in the coming years,” Minister of Science Ofir Akunis stated.
The Israel Space Agency (ISA) is entering an agreement with NASA to test an Israeli-made radiation suit during a deep space mission.
The vest-like suit, dubbed AstroRad, was manufactured by StemRad, a Tel Aviv-based company.
“The StemRad vest for space use was developed based on the principle of selective protection vital organs that are particularly sensitive to radiation exposure,” the ISA said in a statement.
It was initially adapted for women, who are particularly vulnerable to radiation, the ISA explained.
“NASA will launch the vest into space as part of its last test flight of its Orion spacecraft before manned missions begin. If the trial, coined ‘Matroshka AstroRad Radiation Experiment (MARE),’ is successful, it may have applicability for future exploration” the statement added.
NASA Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot and Israel Space Agency Director Avi Blasberger signed the agreement on Tuesday, during the 34th Space Symposium in Colorado.
Cooperation betweeen the ISA and NASA has been ongoing. In 2015, for example, the two agencies signed an important civil space agreement in Jerusalem. Then-NASA administrator Charles Bolden, noting the significance of the “over-arching agreement,” praised Israel’s “innovation and expertise in technology development.”
“Israeli technology in space exploration is known as innovative, resulting from ‘out of the box’ thinking. We are proud to provide this technological breakthrough and become partners of one of the most exciting experiments of mankind in the coming years,” Israel’s Minister of Science Ofir Akunis said.