Tel Aviv-based Advanced Logistics Developments will help provide solutions for malfunctions on the Discovery space program after winning a $5 million contract with Nasa to install its software in the American space agency's space labs.
"This is a big breakthrough for us because we have worked with companies in building solutions for aircraft and now we will be doing a similar job for Nasa," the company's founder and president, Zigmund Bluvband, told The Jerusalem Post.
Under the contract, which Advanced Logistics won through its subsidiary SoHaR (Software Hardware Reliability), the company will install its software to locate and help prevent malfunctions in the space labs over a three-year period. Part of the contract will see Israeli experts from the company working on solutions for the Discovery space lab, the company said.
While Advanced Logistics has worked with Nasa in the past in a consultancy capacity, this is the first time the agency will use its products and safety reliability tools, which Bluvband said could be the first of others to come.
"[Under the contract] Nasa will only use the first phase of our tools and we believe they will enlarge the deal to our most advanced data, reliability stations and dependability knowledge base," he said. "They are now looking at it."
The company said it beat out "some of the leading companies in the aeronautics field" to win the tender.
It also follows other significant contract wins by the company including its involvement in Lockheed Martin's F-35 tactical aircraft to be used by the US Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, and the United Kingdom's Royal Navy and Royal Air Force.
The company also has projects with Airbus, and Bluvband noted that it recently won a major bid with an unnamed European contractor.
All these, he said, will spur the company's growth in 2007 as it looks to increase the 100 people it currently employs.
"We are now looking to increase our staff both qualitatively and in quantity because we are going to do some very specialized work to develop and integrate our reliability, safety and dependability tools for the European contract," he said. "We waited for a long time to win such projects, which I thought would maybe come three or four years ago but it came just now. So I expect a good year for the company."
ALD has its headquarters and main research and development center in Tel Aviv with another office in Rishon Lezion and one in Los Angeles.