BGU Prof. (Emeritus) David Faiman will receive the David Ben-Gurion Award at a ceremony at the Dan Hotel in Tel Aviv on November 20, 2016. The Ben-Gurion Award is bestowed by Yad Ben-Gurion, a non-profit created by David Ben-Gurion to develop the Negev, and is intended for “researchers, authors, composers” and others whose “actions fulfill David Ben-Gurion’s vision and follow his legacy.”
Faiman helped to establish the Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, and has had a pivotal, pioneering career in solar energy research, in which he served as first director of the Ben-Gurion National Solar Energy Center. He continues to carry out research.
A physicist by training, he obtained his first degree (1965) from the University of London, UK, and his second (1966) and third (1969) degrees from the University of Illinois, USA. During the years 1969-1976 he performed post-doctoral research in theoretical physics at: Oxford University, UK; CERN, Geneva, Switzerland; and the Weizmann Institute, Rehovot, Israel.
In 1976 he joined BGU where he participated in the establishment of the Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research at Sede Boqer, refocusing his research activities into the field of applied solar energy. He established the University’s Department of Solar Energy & Environmental Physics, and was the first director of the Ben-Gurion National Solar Energy Center. He has performed pioneering research in the area of Concentrator Photovoltaics, is widely published, and has chaired or been a member of numerous national and international committees.
Most recently he was Israel's representative to the Task 8 Photovoltaic Specialist Working Group of the International Energy Agency where he co-edited 4 volumes in their series "Energy From the Desert". His current research focuses on how to achieve the massive penetration of renewables, particularly solar and wind energy, into the electricity systems of the world.