The winners of Science Accelerator 2022
The winners of Science Accelerator 2022

A mixed team of Italian and Israeli students won the 2022 edition of “Science Accelerator“, a competition dedicated to innovation in the aerospace sector. Science Accelerator is organized by Out of the Box, an Israeli social enterprise that promotes entrepreneurship and innovation in the aerospace sector.

Science Accelerator, now in its fifth edition, aims to spark passion for the aerospace industry in future generations and to provide them with the know-how and skills they need to succeed in the future working market. Organizers put a special focus on attracting young women and girls to the competition.

The ultimate goal of Science Accelerator is to make space accessible to everyone and to create a diverse and equal society on Earth and in space.

itlay israel space science accelerator

Seven groups of students from Israel, Italy, Turkey, India, and Nigeria made it to the final of the 2022 edition of Science Accelerator, which was held at the Italian Federation of Writers (Fuis).

The seven finalist projects for Science Accelerator were: “Wendy“, a digital nurse capable of providing medical and psychological diagnostic services to astronauts; “One Step Forward”, astronaut boots for better stability and movement on Mars and the Moon; “Photomars”, an artificial photosynthesis system for Mars; “Lost in Space”, a meteorite telescope for depth of field shooting; “Plants for Life”, ecological burial solutions on Mars; “Lolaf”, a virtual doctor for astronauts returning to Earth; and “Back from Space”, an exoskeleton designed to allow faster recovery for astronauts returning to Earth from Space.

One Step Forward was the winning project. It was created by team composed of Raz Ben Haim Orzel from Shimon Ben Zvi High School in Givatayim, Shir Hermosh, Kelai High School in Givatayim, Beary Bitton from ORT Ma’ale Tiberias, Daniel Kand, of the Kanot High School, Fabio Pastore and Riccardo Gobbi of the Liceo Scientifico (Scientific High School) “Democrito” in Rome.

italy israel space science accelerator

The Italian students, coordinated by Professor Tiziana Pisani, worked with their Israeli colleagues for about a year. Despite the distance, they managed to complete their project and present it to the jury. The jury was composed of Italian and international experts, including Raphael Singer, Delegate for Economic and Scientific Affairs of the Israeli Embassy in Italy; Lieutenant Colonel Giuseppe Gandolfo, Senior Staff Officer at the Italian Air Force and engineer Ilaria Cinelli, an expert in biomedical and space engineering.

Wendy, created by an all-Israeli team, ended up in second place, while Pfl -Plants for Life arrived third.

We have seen tremendous development in the aerospace industry in recent years,” Verad Cohen Barzilay, founder and director of Out of the Box, said to Forbes. Ms. Cohen Barzilay is one of the 35 women selected by the UN Office for Outer Space (Unoosa) as a mentor for its Space4Women network.

Vered Cohen Barzilay, creator of Science Accelerator
Vered Cohen Barzilay, creator of Science Accelerator

The new space market,” added Ms. Cohen Barzilay, “is rapidly growing and opening up to ordinary people as well. The future generations must have the appropriate skills and tools for the challenges they will face”.

The cooperation in the space field between Italy and Israel is significant, and it is based on a fruitful relationship between the Israel Space Agency (Isa) and the Italian Space Agency (Asi), but also on solid exchanges in the industrial field. Israel is the country that invests the highest percentage of its GDP in research and innovation, and this makes it a key partner in high-tech sectors.