http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 17.02Change: -0.19
R/$ = 14.80Change: -0.19
Au 1285.21 $/ozChange: -2.04
Pt 1060.50 $/ozChange: -7.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters About Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Nov 04, 2011

04/11/2011 (On-The-Air)

Back
safmpod_04112011
 
 
 
Africa|Business|CoAL|Defence|Diamonds|Diesel|Engineering|Eskom|Flow|Gas|Industrial|Mining|Pipe|PROJECT|Safety|Storage|Technology|Training|transport|Water|Welding|Africa|Energy|Flow|Steel|Wind Energy|Infrastructure|Pipe|Diesel
Africa|Business|CoAL|Defence|Diamonds|Diesel|Engineering|Eskom|Flow|Gas|Industrial|Mining|Pipe|PROJECT|Safety|Storage|Technology|Training|transport|Water|Welding|Africa|Energy|Flow|Steel|Wind Energy|Infrastructure|Pipe|
africa-company|business|coal|defence|diamonds|diesel-company|engineering|eskom|flow-company|gas|industrial|mining|pipe-company|project|safety|storage|technology|training|transport|water|welding|africa|energy|flow-industry-term|steel|wind-energy|infrastructure|pipe|diesel



Every Friday morning, SAfm’s AMLive’s radio anchor Gillian De Gouveia speaks to Martin Creamer, publishing editor of Engineering News and Mining Weekly. Reported here is this Friday’s At the Coalface transcript:

De Gouveia: We see that researchers are developing robots to improve safety in South Africa’s dangerous underground mines. That sounds quite interesting, tell us about that.

Creamer: Yes, this is the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), South Africa’s own State-owned research body. They have got in to do research into field robots. These are not going to be the robots that you see in the factories being pick and place and welding robots.

These are robots that move around, they have got mobility. There has been a lot of investment in these around the world for defence reasons. So we might as well ride on the back of that big investment and try and do something special in South Africa for underground mines, because most of these have been used in defence situations for hazard removal and, of course, they are on surface so they can use GPS and global positioning, you can’t do that underground.

There are going to have to be far different intelligent methods used. The South Africans realised that in our mining there is a cycle, drill blast and clean. In between that blast and clean cycle you need to inspect to see that what they call the ‘hanging wall’ the rock roof is not going to cave in on you.

That is quite a dangerous situation so that want to send these robots in that will be able to climb over rubble and operate in narrow passages. There isn’t much there to distinguish from, because there are no beacons underground.

So this is going to be quite a challenge on how they use the radio frequency identification with simultaneous localisation and mapping to actually guide and allow these robots to go in to do the inspection and then to produce a risk map so that you can save lives. We lost 128 people in our mines last year.

De Gouveia: Any ideas to where the funding is going to be coming from?

Creamer: Well this is just normal researching that is being done by the CSIR. Once they get this right there is going to be a demand for this even though some of the mines like AngloGold Ashanti are saying that they are going to move away from blasting all together. There are different trends in the technology spectrum, but this is one that could serve a lot of people, because this whole issue of drill, blast and clean is what most people use.

De Gouveia: While we are on that topic of mining, I hear that diamond giant De Beers is going all out to create thousands of non-mining jobs as it pulls out of diamond mining on South Africa’s West Coast. What does that entail?

Creamer: This is very interesting down in the Namaqualand area there has been a howl of protest with the withdrawal of De Beers from another diamond mine. Of course, Trans Hex are waiting to move in, so that is another issue with the state. The Section 11 transfer of ownership should be filed faster so that you can allow the new owner to move in.

Be that as it may, in the interim you can see De Beers going all out to do the creation of non-mining jobs and they have got a target of 5 000 jobs in five years. They created an enterprise development hub in August and already they have left several enterprises with R14-million worth of loans and 400 jobs have been created already.

They are also going to create 500 artisans down there and they are doing a lot of artisan training in Kimberley. What really impressed me was the new “diamonds” down there. Because of this infrastructure where they used to draw in the water from the sea for their diamond processing, you now see them drawing in that water and putting it into the pits where they’ve mined out the diamonds and growing abalone.

The price of abalone is a very good one at the moment and so you see there that their BEE partner Ponahalo with the fish company Irvin & Johnson (I&J) moving in on an initial R40-million abalone project. They are thinking that this could really have big potential. Then the oyster farm that they’ve got there is also very impressive.

Another aspect is what is happening with wind energy in that area. Although De Beers have got this enormous amount of land there they are offering the farms to various producers of wind energy, three of them independent, but also Eskom. It looks like there are going to be billions of rands worth of wind farms there. When you go around you can see the masts and they are doing the tests.

Another important aspect is that when De Beers goes into this mariculture it is not going to diversify. In other words, De Beers is not going to be producing abalone, they are just warehousing those shares.

The moment there is dividend-flow and cash-flow, they will then create a community trust so that that money can go into the community.

De Gouveia: Still interesting to think though that seafood and mining can go hand-in-hand.

Creamer: Especially with the same infrastructure.

De Gouveia: South Africa’s carbon capture and storage centre is preparing for its first test injection in 2016.

Creamer: Carbon capture and storage. We have got this curse of carbon build-up in South Africa. We use so much coal, I mean, 90% of our electricity comes from coal and 30% of our transport fuel, petrol and diesel comes from coal. A lot of our steel comes from coal.

We have got this obligation to really clean up the coal act, but we are walking in tandem with the world, the world has sort of gone to sleep on this. There was such a lot of urgency in getting the carbon capture and storage effort underway, but we see now the world is more worried about sovereign debt and countries going bust.

I think they are putting this on a bit of a back burner. In the meantime, South Africa is going ahead with its plans and hasn’t changed its schedule. It has got our carbon capture and storage centre and they just finished the scoping study which will result in the first test injection. This sounds horrific, but they are going to inject the carbon that they capture into the ground.

They are finding some sites in KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape, but that’s horrific because it is going to be long distance and a costly exercise to pipe that carbon out. One would say where is the business case here. Hopefully they will be able to do something with that captured carbon dioxide.

The Europeans say that there is nothing you can do with this, you are just going to leave it in the ground. It is a technique that is being used in the production of oil, because they use the gas to inject into these big cavities to lift the level of the oil. But what are we going to do with it here?

There has been talk that perhaps we could turn that carbon dioxide into fuel. That would be fantastic. Sasol is studying the using of algaeic forms of generating fuels from this with the use of algae, but it is still a long shot.

So it still looks like a very big cost at the moment and also a big timeframe, the first test injection only 2016, scoping study just being completed and the demo plant would only come after there are others in the world. South Africa, although we use a lot of coal, we shouldn’t be leading this show, the rest of the world should be doing it, but seem to have fallen asleep at the wheel.

De Gouveia: God willing you’ll be able to give us an update in five years time of what will be happening in 2016. Thanks very much. Martin Creamer is publishing editor of Engineering News and Mining Weekly, he’ll be back with us at the same time next week.


 

Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter

To subscribe email subscriptions@creamermedia.co.za or click here
To advertise email advertising@creamermedia.co.za or click here
 
Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other SAFM
More
 
 
Latest News
Johannesburg mayor Parks Tau
Updated 8 minutes ago At least R14-billion in investments had seen the economic development of the City of Johannesburg, resulting in economic hubs that created jobs and further opportunities for the city’s citizens, mayor Parks Tau said on Wednesday. The city had begun redesigning the...
Ivan Glasenberg hand-in-hand with Education Minister Angie Motshekga at school opening.
Updated 40 minutes ago The mix of mining and marketing within the same company provides sensitivity to commodity price falls. Continually highlighting the value of the mining-marketing mix is Glencore, which is quick to respond to market changes.
Updated 1 hour 17 minutes ago Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Wednesday termed Denel, which is at loggerheads with National Treasury over a joint venture with a company linked to the Gupta family, arrogant and belligerent. “One of the tendencies that we are noting in recent times is that when...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Automotive 2016: A review of South Africa's automotive sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Automotive 2016 Report provides an overview of South Africa’s automotive industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into local demand and production, vehicle imports and exports, investment and competitiveness in the sector, as well...
Energy Roundup – April 2016 (PDF Report)
The April 2016 roundup covers activities across South Africa for March 2016 and includes details of a North Gauteng High Court Judge’s dismissal of a court application to postpone the 9.4% electricity tariff increase, which the National Energy Regulator of South...
Electricity 2016: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2016 report provides an overview of South Africa’s electricity sector, focusing on State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Energy Roundup – March 2016 (PDF Report)
The March 2016 roundup covers activities across South Africa for February 2016 and includes details of the Department of Energy’s plans to announce the preferred bidders for the first tranche of the coal independent power producer procurement programme; the Council...
Steel 2016: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2016 Report examines South Africa’s steel industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the global steel market and and particularly into South South Africa’s steel sector, including production and consumption, main...
Construction 2016: A review of South Africa's construction industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2016 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; key participants; local demand; geographic diversification; corporate activity; black economic...
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
The two spent-fuel pools at Eskom’s 1 800 MW Koeberg nuclear power station, in the Western Cape, will be full by 2018, increasing the urgency on the State-owned utility to begin pursuing alternative storage options. Koeberg has, over the past 32 years, accumulated a...
South Africa lacks the skills necessary to implement the government’s plan to build 9.6 GWe of new nuclear energy capacity, warns nuclear-qualified Quality Strategies International CEO David Crawford. “Apart from the concern about the affordability of the programme,...
DOROS HADJIZENONOS The 700-series devices provide network security monitoring, app control, URL filtering, VPN security, antivirus, antispam, antibot, and advanced intrusion prevention and detection functionality
Cybersecurity multinational Check Point has released its latest 700-series cybersecurity systems for small businesses, which draw on its international threat intelligence to provide up-to-date cybersecurity, says Check Point South Africa country manager Doros...
Daimler Trucks and Buses Southern Africa (DTBSA) saw a marked slip in new-vehicle sales in 2015 compared with 2014, with sales dropping from 5 897 units to 5 300 units. The decline came as the South African new truck and bus market declined from 31 558 units in 2014...
Group of 20 (G-20) economies threatened to penalise havens that don’t share information on their banking clients after the leak of the Panama Papers provoked a global uproar over tax evasion. The G-20 will consider “defensive measures” against financial centers and...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $149 Close
Subscribe Now for $149