Israeli firm designing battery stations for Chinese buses
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Ziv-Av Engineering (ZAE) is taking the quick-change technology for replacing batteries in electric vehicles, pioneered by Shai Agassi’s failed Better Place venture, to China. Over the weekend, the Israeli engineering company signed an agreement in a festive ceremony with China’s Bustil to design battery-changing stations for a fleet of buses operating in Nanjing, near Shanghai. Amir Ziv-Av, the firm’s founder and a former chief scientist in the Transportation Ministry, helped design Better Place’s changing stations, which mimic how robots install fuel tanks and missiles onto fighter jets quickly. Unlike the Better Place stations, the Nanjing ones won’t be entirely automated and won’t involve any underground construction, in order to save costs. The goal is to be able to switch a bus’ 7-9 batteries in just a few minutes.
Jerusalem to introduce online building applications
Starting June 1, Jerusalem will become the first city in Israel to let residents apply for building permits online through the municipal website. The city said on Monday that the online application is one of a series of measures the city is taking to make itself a more attractive place to live and do business. The system was developed and tested with 15 of the city’s leading architectural offices before being opened to the general public, which will now no longer have the option of filing an application on paper. The first of three training sessions in using the new system takes place this Wednesday. But while the system will help applicants save time and money, they should beware: Jerusalem is also going to be allowing people to file objections to build applications online as well.
Hexagon Israel sells 3-D camera system to Lockheed
Hexagon Metrology Israel, the local unit of the Swedish company, has won a 555,000-euro ($603,000) order from the U.S. defense contractor Lockheed Martin to help it in manufacturing the F-35 stealth fighter jet. The three-dimensional system is used to measure thousands of connections used to attach the aircraft’s trapezoidal wings during manufacturing without having to interrupt production. “Our system, including the 3-D camera, saves time and money, and is more exacting,” said Aviel First, vice president for marketing at Hexagon Israel, adding, “We’re expecting additional orders from Lockheed after the first systems are installed.” Hexagon Metrology Israel sells its 3-D cameras and related equipment to many of the world’s leading automobile makers, but recently expanded to aerospace and counts the Israel Air Force among its customers.