A boon for scientific cooperation between Israel and Italy is on the horizon. This week the finest researchers in 2D materials from the two countries are gathering at Bar-Ilan University in order to form meaningful bilateral collaborations to boost this growing field. Recognizing Israel’s significant contributions to science and technology, the Italian Embassy in Israel initiated the three-day Israel-Italy 2D Materials Workshop, hosted by Bar-Ilan’s Institute of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials (BINA).
Italy and Israel share many cultural and economic similarities, said Italian Ambassador to Israel Gianluigi Benedetti in his opening remarks. On the economic front Israeli innovation and Italy’s large manufacturing system complement one another, making the two nations destined to work together. Windows of opportunity such as this can only develop if we push from the bottom up, listening to scholars, researchers and experts and help them consolidate their ideas and proposals into long-term collaboration, he added.
Prof. Dror Fixler, Director of BINA, provided an overview of the Institute, and welcomed the opportunity to forge future collaboration with Italy.
2D materials have attracted extensive interest in recent years due to their thickness from a single to a few atoms that result in exotic electrical, optical and mechanical properties and new physical phenomena. This includes the coupling of linear momentum to electron spin, electrical control of energy bandgap of semiconductors and many other exciting new effects that attract the interest of a very large community. “In the last decade alone two Nobel Prizes were awarded for the discovery of the first two-dimensional material — graphene — and measurement of its properties, as well as the definition and discovery of Topological Insulators, most of which are two-dimensional layered materials,” said Prof. Doron Naveh, of Bar-Ilan University’s Kofkin Faculty of Engineering. Prof. Naveh co-organized the Israel-Italy Workshop with Prof. Oded Hod, of Tel Aviv University, Dr. Andrea Ienco, of CNR-ICCOM, and Prof. Stefano Ventura, Scientific Attaché at the Italian Embassy. “The Workshop will forge new partnerships in bilateral and European frameworks in this up-and-coming field, and we are grateful to be part of this exciting development,” said Dr. Maurizio Peruzzini, Head of the Department of Chemistry, CNR-ICCOM.
“New materials chemistry is opening very interesting opportunities of innovation and, therefore, collaboration between our two countries,” said Prof. Ventura. “The Workshop’s open and closed meetings
will allow researchers to explore common ideas and applications to develop science, technology and even industrial collaborations between us.”
Participants in the Israel-Italy Workshop include researchers from Bar-Ilan University and the majority of Israel’s universities (The Weizmann Institute, Tel Aviv University, Technion, Hebrew University and Ben Gurion University), as well as the Italian National Council for Research CNR-ICCOM (Institute for the Chemistry of OrganoMetallic Compounds), CNR-DSCTM (Department of Chemical Sciences and Materials Technologies, CNR-NANO (Istituto Nanoscienze Consiglio Nazionale delle Richerche), CNR-IMM (Institute for Microelectronics and Microsystems), Università Degli Studi Di Padova, The Polytechnic University of Milan, and The University of L’Aquila.
Most recently, Bar-Ilan University’s Institute of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials signed international cooperation agreements with scientific institutes in China, Finland, Portugal and France.