The Father of Israeli Solar Energy

The Fellowship  |  December 22, 2017

The Father of Israeli Solar Energy

Harry Zvi Tabor

Lived: March 7, 1917 – December 15, 2015

Known for: An Israeli physicist, Tabor brought Israel’s solar energy program to international prominence.

Why you should know him: Born to a Jewish family in London, Tabor participated in Zionist Youth organizations. In 1947, he married Vivenne Landau.

Two years later, in 1949, Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion sent a letter to England offering Tabor a job with the “physics and engineering desk” of Israel’s Research Council. Tabor accepted the job.

Once in the Holy Land, Tabor created the National Physical Laboratory of Israel, which he knew the new nation needed. Once that was done, he focused on solar energy.

Tabor developed the solar water heater used by 95% of Israeli households. These simple heaters operate without pumps, heating cold water in the panel. This became the international standard for solar water heating, and helped popularize solar thermal technology in the United States in the 1970s.

After serving the Jewish state and the world, Harry Zvi Tabor passed away in Jerusalem at the age of 98.

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