Second Israeli in space will "follow in Ilan Ramon's footsteps"

Arutz Sheva speaks with Inbal Kreiss, director of innovation at Israel Aerospace Industries, to find out more about this new mission.

Yoni Kempinski ,

ענבל קרייס
ענבל קרייס
צילום: ערוץ 7

This week, Israel announced that Eytan Stibbe will become the country’s second Israeli in space, joining a mission to the International Space Station at the end of 2021.

Eytan Stibbe is a 62-year-old former IAF fighter pilot, and he will be conducting a large number of scientific experiments while on board the International Space Station.

The Ramon Foundation is coordinating the program for the mission, together with the Space Systems Division of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). The Foundation was founded in memory of Ilan Ramon, Israel’s first astronaut in space who was killed in 2003 when the space shuttle carrying him and his fellow astronauts back to Earth broke apart; and of his son Assaf, who was killed in an army training accident.

Arutz Sheva spoke with Inbal Kreiss, director of innovation at the Space Systems Division of IAI, to hear more about this momentous mission.

“The fact that an Israeli has been chosen to participate in this mission showcases our leading position in global space technology,” she says. “It’s a tribute to our experts in academia and research, and will also further our research into new technologies, helping us to maintain our global position.”

Krais describes the “ideal conditions in space for conducting tests – biological tests, tests involving solar energy, tests to answer questions in astrophysics and to examine the properties of various materials, and more.”

She also stresses the historic nature of the mission, the first time in almost 20 years that an Israeli will be in space, following the mission during which Ilan Ramon was killed.

“Pursuing our ambitions in space gives our younger generation the encouragement to ‘dare to dream,’ to look up into space and become inspired,” she says. “We want to see more of our youth studying STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering, and mathematics – so that they will grow up to become the next generation of Israeli innovation, keeping our flag flying out there in space – just as it will be flying during this next mission.”