Advancing Technology
Our Achievements

Advancing Technology

Science for the benefit of technology.

In 1954, Weizmann Institute of Science researchers built Israel’s first computer—one of the first in the world. In the ‘70s, a Weizmann cryptographer co-developed the algorithm that makes today’s online transactions secure. Recently, an Institute scientist created a DNA-based biological computer so tiny that a trillion can fit in a drop of water. These milestones are more than Institute achievements; they’re a time line of technology’s evolution. Weizmann scientists also developed the technology behind light-sensitive eyeglasses and windshields; are working toward next-generation computers via quantum electronics; creating artificial vision and image-recognition systems; and are using technology to improve security, such as a program that safety-checks complex systems ranging from nuclear reactors to spacecraft.

Weizmann by the Numbers

  • In 1954, we built the first computer in Israel – one of the first in the world
  • We used DNA to create the world’s smallest computer: one trillion fit in one drop of water
  • Shafi Goldwasser: second woman in history and third Weizmann scientist to win the Turing Award

Selected Achievements

Imagine a microscopic biological computer able to find, identify, and diagnose illnesses in the human body.

In 2001, Weizmann’s Prof. Ehud Shapiro created the world’s smallest computer. Built from DNA, about a trillion can fit in a drop of water. In 2004, it successfully identified signs of cancer and even released an appropriate drug.

Imagine science that develops complex systems to safely operate space shuttles.

A Weizmann scientist created a computer language that facilitates the development of sophisticated, complex systems such as those used in aircraft, space shuttles, and nuclear power stations.

Imagine science that guarantees the online security of private information.

Beginning in the 1970s, a Weizmann mathematician and two colleagues at MIT developed several methods of encrypting and decrypting information. In addition to laying the foundation of Internet security, this technology led to “smart cards” and is today used in global financial and governmental communications.

Imagine science that allows a material to transform between states based on exposure to light.

Sunglasses and vehicle windshields that darken when bright light falls on them are familiar consumer goods that were developed following the discovery of photochromism in a Weizmann lab.

Imagine science so productive that it results in a newly approved patent every week.

For the past five consecutive years, the Institute’s technology transfer arm, Yeda Research and Development Company, Ltd., has been ranked among the top five university license income earners in the world and has the largest portfolio of patents in Israel.

Imagine science that wins the Turing Award, the world's highest distinction in computer science.

The A.M. Turing Award, regarded as the “Nobel Prize of computer science,” was awarded to Institute Prof. Adi Shamir in 2003 in recognition of his contributions to the field of cryptography. In 2013, it was awarded to Prof. Shafrira Goldwasser in honor of advances that revolutionized the science of cryptography. She is only the third woman to win.

Imagine science leading to a computer that would power the high-tech economy of a nation.

In 1954, the Weizmann Institute designed and built WEIZAC – the first computer in Israel and one of the first in the world.

Project-Based Fundraising, Find Your Passion

When you support Weizmann Institute scientists that inspire you with their vital work, and encourage others to join your effort, you become partners in the search for meaningful solutions to the world's greatest challenges.