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April 21, 2020 10:51 am

The New Normal at Jerusalem Venture Partners: Robots, Temperature Taking Tech, and 3D Printed Masks

avatar by Elihay Vidal / CTech

Israel Defense Forces soldiers helping to fill and deliver oxygen tanks as part of the country’s efforts to combat the coronavirus epidemic. Photo: IDF Spokesperson’s Office.

CTech – The Startup Nation is back to work, but not without taking the necessary precautions. In the Jerusalem Venture Partners’ Media Quarter of Jerusalem, for example, each employee that arrives at the office undergoes an advanced temperature check, completes an online health questionnaire, prints out a 3D face mask, and is allocated special space in the complex to ensure social distancing.

JVP employs around 250 people in about 20 start-ups and incubators in Jerusalem. By using the latest technological solutions, they decided to build on the new Israeli Ministry of Health Guidelines to ease the restrictions on economic and social activity. At the entrance to the complex, each employee goes through a special temperature-screening technology tool developed by Thermogate, which detects body temperature in seconds. Then, within minutes, a “Good Thought” 3D printing machine produces a plastic face protector to reduce the chances of infection.

In addition, everyone who enters the complex completes a short questionnaire developed by the Weizmann Institute, entrance to the building is granted or denied based on the results. The elevator in the building has been programmed to ensure that only those granted access can use it, and each door in the building has sanitizing materials at hand. All door handles in the compound are disinfected every hour by the cleaning staff.

Once inside the building, in order to minimize contact between employees, a robot manufactured by TEMI Personal Robots transfers documents between the offices. Guests arriving at the complex are not allowed into the building and conference rooms, but only to a dedicated guest building with a separate entrance. Guests enter from one side of the building and the compound workers from the other. Pitches from startup companies raising money for the JVP fund will be presented in this space, ensuring both parties do not come in direct physical contact.

“Israel’s tech sector provides solutions for people across the globe dealing with the challenge of the Covid-19 pandemic, but beyond that, we are producing a higher level of best practices and standards for a return to work, which can be applied worldwide,” said Erel Margalit, JVP’s chairman and founder. “First of all, we need to make sure our workers come to work and return home healthy.”

JVP was recently selected by New York City to establish the city’s International Cyber Center. The model for a return to work being implemented in Jerusalem will serve as a pilot for the New York center, which is expected to reopen in the coming month.

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