Associate Professor Avi Schroeder, of the Wolfson Faculty of Chemical Engineering, and Associate Professor Daniel Zelazo, of the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, were selected as the inaugural winners of the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology Crown Vanguard Award for Science and Technology Innovation. The awards are in recognition of their trailblazing work in life sciences and classical engineering.

The Crown Vanguard Award was created to secure the Technion’s place at the forefront of innovation, making it possible to retain outstanding mid-career faculty whose brilliant work is at the stage wherein it could become the next world-changing breakthrough. Winners are selected by a council of world-renowned scientists and experts in each field.

The award will provide the assets and funding to ensure the Technion retains its best researchers, and its position as the birthplace of the science and technology discoveries that impact Israel and the world.

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Associate Professor Avi Schroeder leads the Laboratory for Targeted Drug Delivery and Personalized Medicine Technologies in the Wolfson Faculty of Chemical Engineering. Prof. Schroeder plans to use his Crown Vanguard Award to purchase a flow cytometer sorter. Considered to be crucial for the Technion to compete with other leading universities, the sorter will replace a widely used system that has been in at the University for more than 12 years.

Flow cytometry detects and measures the physical and chemical characteristics of natural or synthetic

Technion Professor, Avi Schroeder.

cells and micro- and nano-particles. Flow cytometers identify, count, and characterize cells and small particles, and flow cytometry sorters sort them for further analysis. This includes growing the sorted cells, and extracting DNA, RNA, and other proteins from them for further detection, analysis, and evaluation. The sorter will benefit not just Prof. Schroeder: it will also be used by faculty members from three different departments.

Associate Professor Daniel Zelazo directs the Philadelphia Flight Control Laboratory in the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering. He was awarded the Crown Vanguard Award for his work that is critical for the development of controls necessary for multi-agent systems, which include automated transportation networks, smart grids, and the Internet of Things. Such controls require theoretical advances and experimental setups to validate theories.

Prof. Zelazo will use his award to build a lab for testing algorithms, developing new control

Daniel Zelazo

algorithms, and implementing the results in specific multi-agent control systems, including swarms of mini-robots, coordinated drones, and a smart grid control simulator. The new lab will also be used for teaching purposes.

The Crown Family has long been a part of the Technion family. Past gifts to the university have included major funding for the Rappaport Technion Integrated Cancer Center, support for graduate student fellowships, and the establishment of the Crown Center for Superconductivity. Lester Crown received a Technion Honorary Fellowship in 1996. In 1994, he was also awarded the Albert Einstein Award, the American Technion Society’s highest honor.

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Avi Schroeder
Technion Professor, Avi Schroeder.
Avi Schroeder