Weizmann Institute of Science 70th Anniversary
The Weizmann Institute of Science has been guiding the spirit and substance of the State of Israel for 70 years. Dr. Chaim Weizmann, the first president of Israel and founder of the Weizmann Institute of Science is quoted in the campus square: “I trust and feel sure in my heart that science will bring to this land both peace and a renewal of its youth, creating here the springs of a new spiritual and material life. [...] I speak of both science for its own sake, and science as a means to an end.” And in fact, 70 years after its founding ceremony, attended by the leaders of the young nation on November 2, 1949, the Weizmann Institute of Science is today ranked third in the world for research quality (Nature Index 2019ranking) and is among the world’s 25 most influential institutions for technological and medical application. This is an especially significant achievement, as the Institute’s scientists focus on basic research, motivated solely by curiosity that has a single goal: to expand the boundaries of human knowledge and better understand the world and our place in it.
Weizmann scientists were the first to study cancer in Israel, the first to build an electronic computer (in 1954), the first to develop amniocentesis and the first original Israeli drug (Copaxone, for the treatment of multiple sclerosis). The first three particle accelerators in Israel were operated at the Institute and advanced ways to utilize solar energy were studied and developed in its solar dele tower. Prof. Ada Yonath, who deciphered the structure and workings of the ribosome, the cell's protein factory, was the first female Israeli scientist to be awarded the Nobel Prize (2009). Today the Institute is a leader in developing personalized medical treatment, aerospace research and quantum physics.
The Weizmann Institute of Science also contributes in the social and educational realms. The “Perach” tutorial project was started at the Institute in the 1970’s. The national Science Oriented Youth program also began here. The expanded program is now managed by the Davidson Institute of Science Education, the educational branch of Weizmann Institute of Science. Thus the Institute’s scientists continue to lay the foundation of Israel's status as the "startup nation”, as well as narrowing social gaps and working to improve the overall welfare of humankind.
Description of the Stamp
The symbols rising from Dr. Chaim Weizmann’s hand represent the various fields of research at the Weizmann Institute of Science:
• Chemistry – an acetone molecule. The molecule is floating above Weizmann’s hand because he himself was a chemist. The process of using bacteria to produce acetone for the British military in WWI garnered him political and scientific prestige.
• Physics – an atom.
• Mathematics & Computer Science – the Greek letter phi.
• Life Sciences – a strand of DNA.
• Education – a graduation mortarboard.
The symbols’ upward movement symbolizes the future.
Images of Dr. Chaim Weizmann on the stamp and FDC: courtesy of the National Photo Collection. The FDC features a photo of the Weizmann Institute of Science Jacob Ziskind Building, the Institute’s first building. The inaugural ceremony was held here on November 2, 1949, attended by Dr. Chaim Weizmann and Prime Minister David Ben Gurion. The WEIZAC, Israel’s first computer, was constructed in this building. Today, the Jacob Ziskind Building houses the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science. Photo courtesy of Weizmann Institute of Science.
The cancellation features an acetone molecule.