The Israeli satellite Venμs, the earth observation and exploratory mission of the Israel Space Agency (ISA), flashed its first photographs of Yerushalayim and the surrounding area on Wednesday.
The long-awaited images were transmitted with unprecedented clarity, including details of various terrestrial landmarks.
“We see the beauty of Yerushalayim even from space,” declared Israel’s Science, Technology and Space Minister Ofir Akunis. “The success of the Venμs project is already evident, and this is just the beginning.”
“The entire world will benefit from this satellite in the coming years, as its images enable breakthroughs in environmental research, geology, water and food.”
The Yerushalayim area has been plagued by wildfires, usually associated with summer heat waves, aridity and drought. The data to be transmitted from Venμs will make it possible for scientists to develop a new ecological approach that they hope will reduce the incidence of these destructive fires.
Some 110 research areas will be photographed around the world. When the satellite passes over Israel, it will photograph three swaths in the Galil, the coastal area and the Negev, where most national parks, forests, ecological stations and nature areas exist. The photos will also benefit university, government and state research institutes.
Although Venus is a joint project of Israel and France, all of the satellite’s hardware components were made by Israel’s space industries.