Ben-Gurion University launches Oazis, its academic accelerator

Managed by Michel Assayag, Oazis is working in collaboration with the technology transfer company of BGU, and is empowered by IBM Alpha Zone.

Ben Gurion University (photo credit: screenshot)
Ben Gurion University
(photo credit: screenshot)
Oazis, an accelerator aimed at promoting new academic technologies, was launched on Sunday by the Yazamut360 Entrepreneurship Center of Ben-Gurion University.
Managed by Michel Assayag, Oazis is working in collaboration with BGN Technologies, the technology transfer company of BGU, and is empowered by IBM Alpha Zone, an accelerator program based in Israel that give start-ups access to mentorship, technical training and support, and the IBM infrastructure.
"The Oazis accelerator enables BGU's leading researchers to broaden their understanding in business-related aspects and in translating the deep technologies developed at the labs into business initiatives," said Prof. Carmel Sofer, chairman of Yazamut360.
"In addition, the accelerator helps the researchers find partners to build their new ventures as start-up companies and promotes the conversion of outstanding research into successful start-up companies."
"Oazis is a unique initiative in the Israeli academic landscape, and an important tool for accelerating the conversion of innovative applicable research originating from BGU into start-ups that will develop innovative products," added Josh Peleg, CEO of BGN Technologies.
"It is noteworthy that since the beginning of the year, we recorded a 30% increase, compared to the corresponding period in 2019, in the number of new invention disclosures based on research from BGU," continued Peleg. "This is a testament to the burst of innovation and entrepreneurship of the ecosystem surrounding the university, of which Oazis is a part, and which will lead to regional growth and transformation of the Negev into a center of knowledge, innovation and technology."
Oazis will hold a virtual demo day on September 15 via Zoom, to introduce the six following start-ups that comprise its first cohort.
NeuroHelp, which is developing a system for detecting and predicting epileptic seizures based on a unique combination of EEG-based monitoring of brain activity together with proprietary machine-learning algorithms. The wearable device can generate advanced warning about an upcoming seizure that will be sent to a smartphone up to an hour prior to its onset. The system was developed by Dr. Oren Shriki and his team at the Department of Cognitive and Brain Sciences, BGU.
Panacea, whose technology based on machine learning, in order to streamline clinical trials, was developed by Prof. Boaz Lerner, of BGU's Department of Industrial Engineering and Management. The technology offers pharmaceutical companies a tool for reducing the steep costs and long development time of clinical trials, and even more importantly, increasing the chances for a successful drug-development process. Panacea's technology helps biopharma companies optimize the characterization of patients that will respond to the drug under development, select appropriate drug doses and identify potential pitfalls at the early stages of clinical studies.

3D-Green
, which is developing raw materials for 3D printers from recycled plastic bottles, thus reducing costs and increasing availability while protecting the environment. Instead of currently available plastic spools, 3D-Green's product uses widely available plastic bottles, converting them into raw plastic material for 3D printers. The technology was developed by Itai Yair, a graduate of BGU's Industrial Engineering and Management program.
Flanimus, which is developing a simple, one-minute breathalyzer test for diagnosing the coronavirus at the cost of three dollars per test, based on an invention by Prof. Gabby Sarusi, Deputy Head for Research at the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a faculty member of the Electro-Optical Engineering Unit at BGU. In comparison, currently available PCR tests cost $100 per test, with results available only after 1-2 days.
The Flanimus test can be performed at any location and by any operator, without the need for trained staff or dedicated labs. The device comprises two main parts: a disposable capsule with a chip inside and a spectrometer. After breathing into the capsule, it is inserted into the spectrometer, and the spectral signature of the virus is detected using proprietary software.
Testory, which is presenting a platform for automated QA processes that enables software analysis built on Story Based Testing, based on research by Prof. Gera Weiss of the Department of Computer Science and Dr. Achiya Elyasaf of the Software and Information Systems Engineering Department, both at BGU. This unique technology enables QA personnel to easily and effectively map millions of behavioral patterns and all system usage modes, which are not amenable for current analysis.
Testory provides solutions with sufficiently wide coverage of possible pitfalls. Consequently, significant bugs are detected after the product has reached the customers on two levels: on the one hand, mapping of all possible scenarios; on the other hand, when the system detects bugs it tags the scenarios that failed and provides the developers with all necessary information for diagnosing and understanding the problem in order to solve it.
MirageDynamics, is a technology that creates new video ad space, thereby enabling content providers and owners of ad infrastructures to automatically integrate virtual ads and increase sales from advertising, developed by Jihad El-Sana from the Department of Computer Sciences at BGU, an expert on image processing, video, augmented reality, and computer vision.
By using deep learning algorithms, the unique technology enables automatic detection of video ads, calculation of exposure indices for each ad and integration of new ads that are matched to the viewer and to the content of the video. MirageDynamics creates new video ad space, thereby enabling content providers and owners of ad infrastructures to automatically integrate virtual ads and increase sales from advertising.
The demo day will be held at 13:00-15:30 Israel time via Zoom here.