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Space Florida-Israel Innovation Program Announces Awards
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., September 17, 2014 (Space Florida PR) – Space Florida and MATIMOP (Israel’s Industrial Center for Research and Development), on behalf of the Office of the Chief Scientist (OCS) in the Israeli Ministry of Economy, are pleased to announce the first-round winners of industrial research and development funding tied to the Space Florida-Israel Innovation Partnership Program.
In October 2013, the States of Florida and Israel formed a $2 million (recurring) joint program to support research, development and commercialization of aerospace and technology projects that benefit both States. The program was launched in January at the Ilan Ramon Space Conference held in Israel, and a Request for Proposals was posted on the Space Florida and MATIMOP websites and two teams have been selected for first-round awards. They are:
1. Micro Aerospace Solutions, Inc. (MAS) of Melbourne, Florida and NSL Satellites Limited of Israel. This team will develop a large dish antenna with the capability to be deployed from cube satellites. MAS will design the antenna prototype and associated radio frequency (RF) design and NSL will design individual communication and control systems that will allow the antenna to maneuver and orient toward the ground station. If successful, the antenna would enable small satellites to transfer data much more rapidly and consume less power.
2. Swiss Space Systems, Inc. (Florida operations at Exploration Park) and SpacePharma R&D, Ltd. of Israel. This team will test and validate activities associated with the design and engineering of an airborne telemetry and control system that enables live interaction between microgravity experiments and scientific users. S3 will provide test and validation services that will document the performance of the prototype airborne telemetry and control system, while SpacePharma will design and build a prototype telemetry and control system that allows principal researchers to receive real-time data on their microgravity experiment and make adjustments. This capability does not exist on equipment currently available to house scientific experiments flown in microgravity.
Each company will receive respective funding awards separately from Space Florida and the OCS.
Within the original RFP, Israeli and Florida-based companies were asked to present cooperative proposals, with research funding being awarded to teams demonstrating the most promising partnerships – those that demonstrate near-term potential for commercialization and economic benefit to both states.
Applicants were asked to present a proposal that incorporated projects in one of the following technological fields:
- Satellite Communication
- Small Satellite Technology and Small Launch Vehicles
- Space Research Related Sensor Technology (including bio-sensors)
- Nano-Materials and Coatings for Space Applications
- Electric Power Resources for Space Applications
- Microgravity Research tied to Human Life Sciences
- Unmanned Aerial Systems
- Nano-, Flex- and Low-Power Electronics
- Micro- and Nano-Robotics
- And other Space and Aerospace-Related Research
“Partnering with countries that value and invest in next-generation space and aerospace technology development and commercialization falls directly into our mission of ensuring a robust high-tech industry right here in Florida,” said Space Florida President Frank DiBello. “Florida and Israel have complimentary goals and resources in these areas and we are pleased to announce our first two awardees.”
“The success of this first funding round proves the benefits of bilateral R&D partnerships, that accelerate innovation and economic growth,” said Chief Scientist Avi Hasson. “We are looking forward to launch the second round and utilize this platform in order to further strengthen the economic ties between Florida and Israel.”
“The Memorandum of Understanding once again highlights how the strong ties between the people of Florida and Israel have the power to create vital benefits for both states – economic growth for Israel and jobs for Florida. There are enormous untapped opportunities between Florida and Israel. The collaboration between the participating companies will most certainly create a ‘win-win’ situation for both countries,” said Consul General of Israel to Florida Mr. Chaim Shacham.
The next joint call for applications is expected to be released by early September 2014. Florida-based companies interested in more information can visit www.spaceflorida.gov. Israel-based companies please visit https://www.matimop.org.il/usa.html.