NanoIsrael 2016 hopes to be Israel’s largest nanotech conference yet


Israel and Tel Aviv University are putting on the country’s fifth annual conference to promote nanotechnology in Silicon Wadi.  NanoIsrael 2016 is scheduled to take place from February 22-23 at the Smolarz Auditorium at Tel Aviv University. Organizers, including the National Committee for Nanotechnology (INNI), are hoping for the biggest conference yet.

Nanotechnology is still a highly academic field, but unlike other industries it affects so many different subjects. Nanotech research tends to be multidisciplinary and requires a healthy amount of input from chemists, physicists and engineers. In a way, it’s its own scientific field. Some of the sessions include presentations on nano medicine by Professor Rimona Margalit, nano energy by Professor Gideon Grader and using nanotech to attack cancer cells by Professor Ronit Satchi-Fainaro.

Sponsors include Elbit, Merck, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Qlight Nanotech, and the Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology at TAU. Several nanotech startups and larger companies will be there like Nano Dimension, Nano Spun, Tortech, Vulcan, NanoAir, Melodea and Nano Retina. Institutional sponsors and exhibitors are as international as they are domestic, with NanoCanada, Bar Ilan University and Ben Gurion University putting its hats into the ring.

NanoIsrael 2014 covered similar topics, but research progress has doubled in the last couple years, as have the events on the program (image, Ben Gurion University)
NanoIsrael 2014 covered similar topics, but research progress has doubled in the last couple years, as have the events on the program (image, Ben Gurion University)

The conference agenda will cover medicine, aerospace, advanced materials, mobile tech and as always finding new applications for recently debuted nanomaterials. Other industries getting featured include photovoltaics, which is being consumed by new nanotechnologies. Tumor-targeting nanoparticles, honeycomb 3D microbatteries (nanobatteries?), smart ceramics and nano-powering wireless electronics with dye are all slated to get special highlights on the conference’s three stages.

Conference to focus on an Israel nanotechnology strategy

“Nanotech companies registered in the INNI network are active in many fields and exploit the unique properties of nanotechnology to improve existing products and break into new fields,” said Dan Wilensky of INNI in a statement to the press. “There are 15 or 20 large companies active in the field right now. The other companies, the small- and medium-sized startupsm, demonstrate unique capabilities and are advancing some pretty groundbreaking technologies. That sector ought to grow in the next few years as nanotech reaches accelerated levels of maturity and research [continues into other] industrial applications.”

Israel maintains six academic nanotech research centers across the country, the largest being at Tel Aviv University between the Diamond District and the hi-tech neighborhoods of Ramat HaChayal and HaAtidim.

Wilensky added, “Israel is not the only country that has identified the full potential of the nanotechnology industry. The rest of the industrial world sees its potential and describes it as the next wave in the Industrial Revolution. Therefore, investment in the area is skyrocketing.”

Pointing to up to $3 billion in investments from the U.S. and $1.5 billion from China, Wilensky believes Israel is well-positioned to take advantage of an industry only just beginning to boom.

He noted, “We’ve invested financial, human and personal resources into the nano program and we still aren’t there yet.” Ultimately, policymakers who have been so instrumental in supporting the industry need to keep going. “Policymakers have to be creative and outline a plan for meeting our economic objectives.”

NanoIsrael 2016 will take place from February 22-23 at Tel Aviv University. Click here to register.


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