BGU | The Sky is No Limit

Space Entrepreneurs Ben-Gurion University of the Negev pioneered entrepreneurship training in Israel, producing startups and initiatives that are changing the world. and offers courses and workshops on the world of space, as well as guidance on scientific projects and research in the formal and informal sector. Space Valley collaborates with a range of BGU graduates have launched innovative space-based initiatives and startups that save lives, resources, and educate the next generation

and other planets. He subsequently recognized that the same technology – synthetic aperture radar – could be even more effective here on Earth. The water was closer, the need more immediate, and the technology had the potential to solve several critical problems. He co-founded Utilis (now known as Asterra) in 2013 to develop applications for the new technology and leak detection in underground water systems became its first commercially used application in 2016. Asterra’s technology uses a band of the radio spectrum to penetrate the Earth’s surface from an orbiting satellite; and an algorithm, fine-tuned to detect treated drinking water, can detect underground leaks as small as 0.5 liters per minute. Applications of the same technology are now offered for dams, wastewater systems, mining and more. After several years in the hi-tech industry, Dr. Guy Hetz and Dr. Marina Hetz, both graduates of the EPIF, left for the quiet of the Jezreel Valley, where they founded the educational startup Space Valley in 2017. Today, the company has about ten employees

In keeping with this issue’s theme, we turn the spotlight onto a few successful space-related startups. The Earth and Planetary Imaging Facility (EPIF), in particular, has played a key role in disseminating remote sensing to many walks of life in Israel and, just as importantly, has provided the foundations for related initiatives and startups that save lives, resources, and educate the next generation. Roi Shiloh, a graduate of the EPIF, is the founder and CTO of PlanetWatchers, which provides crop monitoring and analysis services to the crop insurance industry. The company, founded in 2016, uses a data fusion of synthetic aperture radar optical imagery obtained through remote sensing and machine learning algorithms to detect and monitor crop planting, growth,

local authorities to bring space related content to thousands of children and adults every year. Adam Bismut was still a student when he began working on what would become SightBit, with the support of BGU’s Cactus Capital Fund and the InNegev accelerator. The company specializes in what it calls the “human water interface”, offering an AI powered platform for prediction and prevention of various scenarios related primarily to supporting lifeguard services, but also to monitoring spills and pollution along beaches and more. SightBit uses AI to enable efficient decision making based on real-time data from existing video feeds, as well as predictions made based on aggregate data analysis. The company has signed contracts with various local authorities in Israel and abroad. We can’t wait to see the next innovations coming out of BGU.

harvest, and identify damage. BGU alumnus Lauren Guy, first

developed a technological solution for finding underground water on Mars

Asterra's satellite imagery shows potential leaks (in yellow, left), with overlay of all water pipes (in blue, right). Images: Asterra


Made with FlippingBook - Online Brochure Maker