The Ministry of Science and Technology announced that it intends to renew its initiative to send another Israeli astronaut to space.
The first and only Israeli astronaut was Ilan Ramon, who died in 2003, along with the rest of the space shuttle Columbia crew. The shuttle exploded over east Texas during re-entry into Earth's atmosphere,16 minutes prior to its scheduled landing.
Representatives of the Israel Space Agency have begun initial talks with international space officials with the goal of exploring the ramifications of such an eventuality. If the ISA can locate the necessary resources, they hope to place an Israeli astronaut at the International Space Station in the next few years.
More than 14 senior space officials from around the world were in attendance at The 8th Ilan Ramon International Space Conference, held this Tuesday through Thursday in Herzliya, organized by the ISA, the Ministry of Science and Technology and The Fisher Institute for Air & Space Strategic Studies.
Director-general of the Science Ministry, Menachem Greenblum and Dr. Paul Weisenberg, deputy director-general for Entrepreneurship and Industry in the EU signed a framework agreement, which will open doors for further cooperation with Israel on various European space projects.