Celebrating Innovation: How Israel changed the world

Text: Žikica Milošević

Israel has long been declared the Startup Nation and is proudly carrying this flattering nickname. This is the country with the highest number of startups per capita in the world. Over the past decades, thousands of Israeli startups have led to innovation in a range of areas, from agricultural irrigation and GPS navigation to the treatment of cancer that saves many lives.

According to Joel Landau, there are currently more than 6,000 startups in Israel. Israel is considered the second largest technology innovator, immediately after the famous Silicon Valley in California. Here are some examples of successful Israeli startups that have changed the world lately.

IceCure – from cancer to ice

IceCure’s cryoablation technology is one of the most groundbreaking in the treatment of the gravest illness that is cancer. This technology transforms small benign and malignant tumors of the breast and lung into the balls of the ice, eliminating the need for surgical procedures. The cryopreservation system uses low temperatures and liquid nitrogen to essentially freeze the tumor in place, in a procedure that lasts only 15 minutes and requires only a small amount of local anesthetic.

Mobileye – watching over you while you drive

By facilitating safer driving and potentially saving lives, the Israeli company Mobileye is developing technology that can help the driver with accident prevention. Also, this company is one of the major developers of autonomous automotive technologies. Their systems use video cameras and advanced algorithms for identification and reaction to other vehicles, road curves, pedestrians and traffic signs, providing advance warning to drivers and thus preventing road accidents. Mobileye has already incorporated its technology into cars made by Audi, Tesla Motors and others.

SniffPhone – how to literally smell your disease

Professor Hossam Haick of Technion – Israel Institute of Technology presented last year a device that can sense the disease from the breath, similar to the breath-analyzer test. The device that he named SniffPhone uses nanotechnological sensors to analyze the inhalation particles and can determine the exact disease, including certain types of cancer. SniffPhone, Haick’s new mobile device, contains its pre-developed NaNose breath test, which “sniffs” and smells out lung cancer before it spreads. The smartphone device is the carrier of the NaNose technology that is mobile and therefore can be used anywhere, including rural areas.

Netafim – how to preserve water

Netafim is synonymous with the famous Israeli invention of drip irrigation system, which now helps many countries around the world to preserve water and save money by supplying plants with just the right amount of water. The drip irrigation technique was developed in the 1960s, and it was invented by an Israeli engineer and inventor Simcha Blass in collaboration with Kibbutz Hazerim, who later began producing his original drop irrigation systems. In the wake of the growing water shortage in the world, the eyes of the world have been directed to Israel anticipating what is this country going to do about this sensitive problem, because Israel is a country located in the arid area, with the growing population and the GDP per capita, which, in translation, means that the settlements are expanding simultaneously with business facilities. A few years ago, this country carried out one of the important water conservation measures, with one of the Israeli inventions being to inject air into the tap water and thus create “oxygenated water flow.”

Takadu – another water conservation aid

Israeli startup TaKaDu has been working on developing pipe leakage solutions. The company, founded in 2009 by the Executive Director Amir Peleg, provides monitoring services for the water supply network system that helps water companies to monitor their water grids, detect leaks, explosions, inefficiencies and problems with their equipment or operational problems, all in real time. What is especially good about TaKaDu is that they use the existing data from available sensors and grid meters.

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