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The “Optics” of Green Technology

Dr. Amir Handelman, a senior lecturer at the Faculty of Electric and Electronics Engineering and Head of the AI in Optics, Medicine, and Materials Lab, is an expert in organic photonics and artificial intelligence. Two of his latest innovations have secured him the Israeli Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology research grants in the “Unique Groundbreaking Applied Research” category.


The first grant is dedicated to developing an integrated optical artificial intelligence processor that is based on bio-organic materials. Dr. Handelman envisions a green technology for creating optical devices that can perform deep learning calculations. This project introduces the concept of bio-organic photonic chips that can perform vector-matrix multiplications operations. Such chips are expected to be more flexible and cheaper than current options, and more importantly they are eco-friendly.


These innovative devices could be integrated into a wide variety of applications, including medical components that can be implanted in the body, wearable optics, biological sensors, and optical communication systems.

Dr. Handelman’s second grant directly addresses the looming global food crisis by developing a unique technology to produce cultured me i.e., meat produced in a laboratory from cell cultures and not from actual animals. In this cutting-edge collaboration with Prof. Ofra Benny from the School of Pharmacy, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Dr. Handelman is building a system of tissue cultures that are combined with light-sensitive materials.


Not only will this study improve the production processes of cultured meat, and consequently the quality of the protein, it will also make it cheaper, which will ease cultured meat's introduction into the food market. Another notable potential benefit is utilizing it in human organ production processes for transplantation.