Our Vision

Today’s society is fueled by cheap, high density, readily available energy. The industrialized world maintains its high standard of living through an equally high rate of energy consumption. To leave future generations a safer and healthier world, while not compromising their ability to live according to their needs, our generation must ensure their energy resources, both as instantaneous forms (electricity) and stored ones (fuel).

To meet the challenge of providing clean, sustainable energy, the Weizmann Institute has established SAERI. The goal of this initiative is to create the conditions conducive to alternative energy research and to identify promising avenues of research.

The reasons for setting up SAERI included:

  • our conviction that basic research into the fundamentals of energy, light, matter and materials, biology and chemistry can produce the hoped for, paradigm-shifting discoveries and evolutionary developments that will lead to a cleaner, "greener" energy future.
  • the need to support “blue-sky” and speculative, basic research that is not generally funded by conventional sources or else cannot be sufficiently funded with regard to amount or time.

While the Institute has a long history of alternative – especially solar energy – research, SAERI aims to stimulate the kind of innovative, basic scientific research on alternative and sustainable energy that our future demands.

Thus SAERI is oriented toward two major goals:

  • to encourage Weizmann scientists to conduct basic research that is relevant to the future development of alternative sustainable energyFootnote 1
  • to groom the next generation of scientists in this field around the world – more specifically in Israel and in particular at the Weizmann InstituteFootnote 2

In addition, SAERI strives to increase awareness of the issues – on campus, as well as among the general public, Israeli students and researchers. Activities include graduate courses and fellowships, educational outreach activities and specialized workshops and schools, offered nationally.
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Footnodes

Footnote 1 SAERI advances basic scientific research in directions that are clearly geared towards possible solutions to (1) the present lack of sustainable energy resources and (2) finding future sustainable alternatives to the fossil-fuel dependence of modern society.
Footnote 2 Information on some aspects of this goal appeared in "Nature Materials" 7 (2008) 93, and can be found on the following websites:
ASEO conference