EXPLORATION PARK, Fla., and AIRPORT CITY, ISRAEL (Space Florida PR) – Space Florida, the aerospace and spaceport development authority for the State of Florida, and the Israel Innovation Authority, created to maintain Israel’s position at the forefront of global innovation and to elevate the entire economy through technological innovation, announce the fourth-round winners of industrial research and development funding tied to the Space Florida-Israel Innovation Partnership Program.
In October 2013, Florida and Israel created a $2 million recurring joint fund to support research, development and commercialization of aerospace and technology projects that benefit both Israel and Florida. For this Call for Projects, in total, 22 joint proposals were submitted by teams of for-profit companies in Florida and Israel, and five teams have been selected for the fourth-round awards.
The winners are as follows:
Micro – gRx/Sanford Burnham Preby’s Medical Discovery Institute (Lake Nona, FL) & SpacePharma (Israel):
In this project, Micro-gRx, the first for-profit company to emanate from Sanford Burnham Prebys’ Medical Discovery Institute, will partner with SpacePharma. The emphasis of this medical research will develop better disease models of muscle-wasting associated with aging. The research will incorporate gene analysis of human muscle cells placed in a microgravity environment while being preserved on a microfluidic Lab-On-A-Chip system on board the International Space Station.
Harris Corporation (Melbourne, FL) & Nano Dimensions (Israel):
The research will jointly develop the next generation of 3D printed electronic systems. The project will demonstrate double-sided, multi-layer circuits, with no-touch manufacturing labor. Harris and Nano Dimensions propose to develop a prototype as well as proof of concept of all the functions required. Such development is planned to lead to cost reductions of $400K per small satellite, thus providing enormous market capabilities for both entities.
SynergyWerks Aerospace (Hobe Sound, FL) & D-Vision (Israel):
These partners propose to develop an unmanned aerial system (UAS) for cost effective, precision mosquito control, as well as other multiple detection areas. When fully developed, and using autonomous vehicles with cameras and sprayers, the entire system will be delivered on-site and operated by a remote pilot, stationed nearby.
HeuRobotics (Daytona Beach, FL) & A-Growing (Israel):
HeuRobotics, a for-profit company emanating from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, has developed a commercially viable unmanned aerial system (UAS) for remote and close sensing. The UAS, while employing A-Growing’s on-board cameras with unique lens design, will be used for analysis, optimization, and improvement and data collection of agriculture crops in both Florida and Israel. New flight dynamic profiles will also be developed for field testing of several varieties of agriculture crops.
Semplastics Inc. (Oviedo, FL) & Nano Dimensions (Israel):
These partners will develop a novel 3D printing technology based on polymer-derived ceramics. With capabilities and skills in developing advanced materials and 3D printing, research will help develop 3D printing components of several ceramic materials, at very low cost. The intent is that producing such objects with various unique properties and characteristics will lead to early commercialization.
Each company will receive their respective funding awards from Space Florida and the Israel Innovation Authority.
Additionally, the Israeli Innovation Authority has approved funding in the fourth round for Israel-based Semi-Conductor Devices (SCD), which continues to work in partnership with Vision Engineering Solutions (Merritt Island, FL).
Vision Engineering Solutions areas of expertise include advanced imaging and sensing; pointing and tracking systems; data collection as well as analysis, modeling and simulation. In partnership with SCD, Vision Engineering is building a prototype gimbal platform to host a 3-Color Diattenuation sensor for the identification and characterization of space objects, or debris, in Low Earth Orbit (LEO).
“Space Florida congratulates the Florida and Israeli companies chosen as awardees in this latest call for projects,” said Space Florida President Frank DiBello. “The innovation partnership continues to support research, development and commercialization of aerospace and aviation technology at a global level, and I look forward to seeing the successes of each winning team.”
The next joint call for applications is expected to be released in July 2017. Florida-based companies interested in more information can visit www.spaceflorida.gov while Israel-based companies can visit www.innovationisrael.org.il.
About Space Florida: Space Florida was created to strengthen Florida’s position as the global leader in aerospace research, investment, exploration and commerce. As Florida’s aerospace and spaceport development authority, we are committed to attracting and expanding the next generation of space industry businesses. With its highly trained workforce, proven infrastructure and unparalleled record of achievement, Florida is the ideal location for aerospace businesses to thrive – and Space Florida is the perfect partner to help them succeed. www.spaceflorida.gov
About Israel Innovation Authority: The Israel Innovation Authority is Israel’s central agency to manage the country’s governmental support of the resource of innovation. As the governments’ operational arm in the arena of technological innovation and R&D, the goal of the Authority is to provide professional support and infrastructure to government efforts to encourage innovation in all industry sectors, complementing the major role that Israel already plays in the global high-tech sector.
The Israel Innovation Authority has three main roles: creating infrastructure to support diverse industries, developing tools and programs that suit the needs of the industry, and budgeting and financing high-risk projects and products. In addition to these roles, the Authority serves as a central hub for knowledge and consists of six customer-oriented “Innovation Divisions,” each providing a variety of tools for each market segment and stage in the life cycle of a product: Technological Infrastructure, Advanced Manufacturing, International Collaborations, Societal Challenges, Growth and Early Stage.