First Exhibition of Palestinian Youth’s Technological Inventions
More than 150 people arrived in Ramallah on 19 January 2006 to witness the emergence of a new technological revolution in Palestine. After a whole year of intensive cooperative work, and with the support of UNDP/PAPP, Al-Nayzak Association for Extra-curricular Education was proud to inaugurate the first exhibition of Palestinian youth’s technological inventions.
The exhibition was opened with a short documentary film produced by Al-Nayzak, which demonstrated the hard work that the young inventors and their supervisors put into the project during the past year. Despite the difficult conditions imposed by the occupation, including the checkpoints which made it difficult to move from one city to another in the West Bank, in addition to scarce resources, the young inventors were able to achieve their goals with a high degree of excellence. This was largely due to perseverance and a great deal of hard work, as well as follow-up and intensive guidance offered by a professional team of Palestinian engineers.
Under the slogan of “Let’s produce, not just consume,” Al-Nayzak announced the beginning of this project about a year ago. From among tens of applicants, eight young men were chosen.
Sami Thuabeh, 20, lives in Tul Karem. His first invention was a car with three wheels and a special gearbox fabricated in an innovative way to combine both manual and automatic shift. He then went on to invent a robot from simple and readily available hardware that is capable of both motion and speech, according to predetermined programmes. He also invented a simple vending machine for tissues.
Hamzeh Abu Shekheidem, 18, is from Hebron. His first invention was inspired by the unpleasant task faced by so many Palestinian residents of clearing blockages from underground sewage pipes, which in addition to being distasteful, can be costly and could incur damage to the building. Hamzeh invented a “worm,” which is a small robot that can enter a pipe and move along it via remote control to detect blockage or damage. The robot can be programmed to fix these problems and thus avoid any damage to the building and any unnecessary unpleasantness to its residents! Hamzeh also went on to invent a motorized system to resist the effects of the sun, wind and snow on agricultural greenhouses. In severe weather conditions, the system changes the direction of the greenhouse’s arches automatically, thus protecting the plants and preventing damage to the greenhouse itself. It also creates an environment that helps decrease the temperature during summer and enables the efficient pollination of flowers inside the greenhouse.
Mustafa Mar’i, 22, also lives in Tul Karem. He invented a system for use in motor vehicles that converts mechanical energy into electrical energy. His inspiration came from the rather bumpy and pot-holed road system in the West Bank that plagues many cars’ suspension system! Mustafa’s invention exploits the internal motion of the suspension system to create electrical energy that can prolong the life of a car’s battery and, in turn, reduce the stress on its dynamo.
Fadi Yaseen, 21, is from the village of ‘Aseera Al-Shamaleyyeh near Nablus. Similar in concept to Mustafa’s invention, Fadi invented a special fan that exploits the power of the wind which hits large motor vehicles driving at high speed and transforms it into electrical energy. The fan diminishes the friction produced by the power of the wind at the front of the vehicle in order to increase its stability on the ground when driving at high speed. Fadi and Mustafa then decided to work on a joint invention, thus becoming both partners and friends in the domain of creative invention. They designed a robotic arm to carry metallic samples from thermal treatment stoves to cooling tanks, which can be used in a variety of industrial processes. Their main objective was to find an answer to safety problems faced in thermal treatment laboratories.
Ibrahim Abdel Jaber, 18, is from Salfit. He invented a game for developing thinking skills called “The Keys to Knowledge.”
Abdallah Jaradat, 16, lives in Jerusalem. He tried to invent a model of a car that has flying capabilities, based on a special streamlined shape, and propulsion engines that enable it to drive on the road and also to fly. At this stage, the model and a complete study of the invention have been completed.
Abdel Fattah ‘Atieh, 17, is from Jenin. He developed what he called the “electric field,” a model of an agricultural field that harnesses its own vegetables’ ability to produce electrical energy that can be used for illumination and automatic irrigation.
Daniel Makhalfeh, 15, resides in Jerusalem. He made a robot for cleaning floors. It consists of three wheels, two engines, and antennas. The robot can sweep floors and carpets and reduce the burden of house cleansing.
The exhibition got a very warm reception from the guests attending it, especially from Dr. Sabri Saidam, the Palestinian Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technology, who said it represented the first step on the path of actually doing things rather than just talking about them in Palestinian society. The success of the project was the greatest reward for all those who were involved in realizing it, including Aref Al-Husseini, the director of Al-Nayzak, Hussam Ruman, project engineer and supervisor, and Sufian Msha’sha’, head of the Sustainable Human Development Unit at UNDP/PAPP.
It is important at this juncture to emphasize the role of parents in encouraging their children to be creative and to support even their simplest ideas. It is also very important that organizations, companies, and even individuals adopt these Palestinian inventions that promise a better future for us all.
By Saja Kilani: Nayzak Project Coordinator.