NASA Launches Effort for Closer Cooperation with Israel
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Administrator and former astronaut Charles F. Bolden Jr. is in Israel and on Sunday urged closer cooperation with the Jewish State, which he cited for its expertise in space technology.
Bolden is guest of honor at the annual the International Ilan Ramon Space Conference, in memory of the late Israeli astronaut who fell in the Colombia space shuttle disaster. He said, “
Minister of Science and Technology Daniel Herskovitz, Ramon’s widow Rona Ramon, President Shimon Peres and leaders of the Israeli space industry met with the NASA director.
Bolden added, “Some people go through life, and never risk anything and never even try anything. What I think is so important about this week… is that it gives us an opportunity to reflect on the life of Ilan, on the kind of things he did and the standards he set for young people to follow.” (Photo: Bolden, Peres and Ramon's wife Rona)
Ramon, a former F-16 squadron commander, and Lt.-Col. Yitzchak May began training at NASA in 1998, and Ramon was chosen to be the first Israeli astronaut. May was his backup.
One of the main projects Ramon was assigned was to observe and take pictures of atmospheric aerosols in the Mediterranean area using ultraviolet, visible and near infrared array-detector cameras. The cameras take calibrated images of desert and transported pollution aerosols over land and sea, which were to provide scientific information about atmospheric aerosols and the influence of global changes on the climate.
The seven-member space shuttle
The relatively tiny Israel Space Agency (ISA), part of the Ministry of Science, has worked with NASA since 1985, two years since the Israeli agency’s inception. In 1986, NASA and ISA signed a general agreement to exchange existing scientific and technical information. The
Former NASA administrator Daniel Goldin visited
In June 1999, NASA and ISA signed an agreement to share information through NASA’s Earth Observation System Data Information System (EOSDIS), making
Under contract from ISA, the
NASA previously has praised