Artificial Reef Installed in Red Sea
July 11, 2008
NEW YORK, NEW YORK — May 31, 2007 — The Marine Biology and Biotechnology Laboratory at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) has installed an artificial reef in the Gulf of Eilat, a collaboration between Israelis and Jordanians to restore local reef culture.
Ultimately, there will be two artificial reefs placed in the Israeli side of the Gulf, and two in the Jordanian area. Students and professors from both countries will work together to study the artificial reef and how it affects marine life.
The Marine Biology and Biotechnology Laboratory opened last winter on BGU’s Eilat Campus, enabling students and professors to deepen and extend projects underway with local biotechnology companies. It will allow for the expansion of basic research into coral growth and bleaching, and applied research into the use of microalgae. “This state-of-the art facility will serve to accelerate science and produce new knowledge for the benefit of students, researchers around the country and the worldwide scientific community,” explains the dean of the Eilat campus, Prof. Shaul Krakover.
Prof. Amir Sagi, the head of the marine biology department at BGU’s Faculty of Life Sciences, has been working on the planning and execution of the lab for nine years, long before BGU opened its Eilat Campus in 2002. Students who concentrate in marine biology and biotechnology will now spend their first two years of university at BGU’s Beer-Sheva campus, and their third year in Eilat working at the new lab. The lab’s first group of 14 students, who Sagi calls “pioneers,” just completed their year of courses in Eilat.
BGU has been involved in recruiting new students into the Marine Biology and Biotechnology Program over the past few years and expects to have approximately 20 to25 students in the next academic year. The Faculty of Life Sciences also hopes to attract more marine biology and biotechnology faculty members to the lab.
About American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (AABGU) plays a vital role in sustaining David Ben-Gurion’s vision: creating a world-class institution of education and research in the Israeli desert, nurturing the Negev community and sharing the University’s expertise locally and around the globe. Activities include showcasing BGU’s academic excellence and cutting-edge research through educational programs, events and informative communications. AABGU’s main purpose is to support Ben-Gurion’s vision and the university that bears his name by creating a community of Americans committed to improving the world tomorrow from the heart of the Israeli desert today.
A. Lavin Communications