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Science Engineering Technology

Science, innovation investment crucial to Africa’s development

By: Mamaili Mamaila     7th November 2019 Africa still does not realise the potential and opportunity that science and innovation hold for its development and the time has come for the continent to be serious about investing more in research, development and innovation, International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor said... 

UK govt's investment in small nuclear reactor programme confirmed

By: Rebecca Campbell     6th November 2019 Britain’s quasi-autonomous national research and development agency UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) confirmed on Tuesday that it had released £18-million in funding to a British industrial consortium developing a small modular nuclear reactor (SMR). The consortium, which has been working on the... 

UK govt's investment in small nuclear reactor programme confirmed
An artist's impression of the SMR nuclear power station being developed by the consortium

Icasa publishes information memo on high-demand spectrum 

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st November 2019 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) on Friday published the awaited information memorandum for the high-demand spectrum licensing process for comment. The document, previously expected to be published by December 31, follows the July publication of the Policy on High... 

Icasa publishes information memo on high-demand spectrum

Aerial evolution is not just for the birds

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st November 2019 Evolution has played almost as important a role in the development of aircraft as it has in the development of birds, although the timescales are very different, argued Boeing 787 Dreamliner chief test pilot Ricardo Traven at the recent 2019 Aeronautical Society of South Africa conference in... 

Air warfare being changed by a revolutionary fighter

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st November 2019 Fifth generation (5th Gen) combat aircraft are totally transforming the nature of air combat, Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II test pilot Billie Flynn told the recent 2019 Aeronautical Society of South Africa conference, in Pretoria. The F-35 multirole fighter is the second 5th Gen combat... 

MTN committed to supporting Cell C – within reason

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st November 2019 Telecommunications group MTN remains committed to “doing its part” in extending a helping hand to embattled Cell C; however, saving South Africa’s third largest mobile operator was not the responsibility of MTN. Cell C and MTN are currently in negotiations over a roaming deal that would... 

App designed to curb cell-tower battery theft wins innovation prize

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st November 2019 The winners of telecommunications giant MTN’s latest edition of TADHackJHB have developed a cell tower protection application aimed at mitigating the growing crisis of vandalism and battery theft at telecommunications base stations. The CharOn solution, produced by the winning duo #1632, allows... 

Mobile giant takes another crack at mobile-money market

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st November 2019 MoMo forms a critical part of the group’s growth prospects, and MTN South Africa is confident that MoMo can mimic the success of telephony and the Internet being revolutionised and democratised over the past two decades. 

Humankind's ancestral 'homeland' pinpointed in Botswana

By: Reuters     29th October 2019 A large ancient wetlands region spanning northern Botswana - once teeming with life but now dominated by desert and salt flats - may represent the ancestral homeland of all of the 7.7-billion people on Earth today, researchers said on Monday. Their study, guided by maternal DNA data from more... 

South African R&D spending up, but concerns remain

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th October 2019 South Africa’s gross expenditure on research and development (GERD) increased in 2017/2018 for the seventh year in succession, the 2017/18 National Research and Experimental Development Survey, published on Thursday, has reported. However, this growth trend is decelerating. Furthermore, in... 

Event seeks to stimulate earth observation sector in South Africa

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th October 2019 The 2019 Earth Observation (EO) Challenge is now under way. This is the fourth iteration of the competition, conceived by the South African National Space Agency (Sansa), designed to stimulate and promote the local Earth observation products and services sector. In this year’s challenge, which... 

Mozambique launching Industry 4.0 skills project

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th October 2019 A major project is being launched in Mozambique to help prepare the country to meet the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), also known as the Next Production Revolution (NPR) or Industry 4.0. This is the “Smart Ecosystem for Innovation, Technology and Knowledge Growth in... 

MTN launches hackathon for new MoMo ambitions

By: Natasha Odendaal     22nd October 2019 Telecommunications group MTN is inviting developers and entrepreneurs across five countries to participate in its mobile money (MoMo) access programming interface (API) hackathon. The hackathon, in partnership with MoMo technology partner Ericsson, will give app developers based in Ghana, Uganda,... 

South Africa could have its own satellite constellation – if it has the will 

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd October 2019 South Africa has the technological capability to create its own constellation of nano- or micro-satellites to supply the country, the Southern African region, or even the whole African continent, to enable the implementation of the Internet of Things (IoT) or the Internet of People (IoP) across... 

South Africa could have its own satellite constellation – if it has the will
Photo by SCS
A computer-generated image of a 6U-Nanosatellite designed by SCS

Stellenbosch University to start training data engineers

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     21st October 2019 The Faculty of Engineering at Stellenbosch University recently received confirmation that the new BEng degree in Data Engineering will be fully accredited by the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) for registration as a professional engineer. The ECSA-accredited degree will also be... 

Rolls-Royce strengthens position in race to develop electric aero-engines

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th October 2019 Renowned UK industrial technology group Rolls-Royce has completed its purchase of Siemens’ eAircraft business. The deal was originally announced in June. eAircraft was the German electrification, automation and digitalisation group’s electric and hybrid-electric aerospace propulsion unit. “We are... 

Scale of Denel’s problems revealed in annual report 

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th October 2019 South African State-owned defence industrial group Denel recently released its annual report for the 2018/2019 financial year (FY). By just about every metric, the group’s position deteriorated from FY 2017/2018 to FY 2018/2019. In FY 2018/2019, revenues were R3.8-billion, down from R5.8-billion... 

UKZN deploys new telescope dish designs at Sarao

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th October 2019 The University of KwaZulu-Natal’s (UKZN’s) Hydrogen and Real-time Analysis Experiment (Hirax) has deployed two new prototype telescope dish designs at the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (Sarao), in Hartebeeshoek, Gauteng. The first dish, made from fibreglass, was designed and... 

Deputy Minister calls for greater collaboration

11th October 2019 Municipalities need to work with the Department of Water and Sanitation and water entities to ensure efficient government supply systems, said Water and Sanitation Deputy Minister David Mahlobo at the inaugural Municipal Water Services Scientific Forum held at the Athlone Wastewater Treatment... 

Deputy Minister calls for  greater collaboration
Photo by Creamer Media
QUALITY CATALYST The Municipal Water Services Scientific Forum will serve as a platform for knowledge sharing in the management of water and effluent quality

New water-level station introduced

By: Tracy Hancock     11th October 2019 The HOBO MicroRX water-level station, which can monitor water levels in the harshest conditions, is the “perfect solution” to South Africa’s current economic and environmental challenges, says local technology integrator Euca Technologies. South Africa has fast become a water-conscious country,... 

New water-level  station introduced
INFORMED DECISION-MAKING The MicroRX water-level station can provide data to help businesses make more informed decisions on how best to action strategies that allow for better management

Regulator needs more capacity to aid SA’s embattled aerospace sector

By: Rebecca Campbell     11th October 2019 Prominent members of the Aeronautical Society of South Africa (AeSSA) have called for the capabilities and capacities of the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) to be strengthened, so that it can undertake internationally accepted certification of transport aircraft designed and... 

Innovation exists, but needs to be scaled up locally

By: Tracy Hancock     11th October 2019 South Africa’s infrastructure needs refurbishment to restore functionality, as well as a digital refit  to enable a new cyber management regime as the local water industry enters the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), says national water knowledge hub Water Research Commission (WRC) CEO Dhesigen... 

Innovation exists, but needs to be scaled up locally
Photo by Creamer Media
WATER GOALS Innovation is the only way through which Africa will come close to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 and achieve reasonable water security

South African parliamentary committee approves SKA Convention

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th October 2019 The Portfolio Committee on Higher Education, Science and Technology of South Africa’s Parliament has approved the Convention which creates the international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Organisation, the Parliamentary Communication Services announced on Wednesday. The SKA Organisation is an... 

South African parliamentary committee approves SKA Convention
Photo by SKA Organisation
An artist’s impression of the South African core element of the SKA

In African first, knee replacement is done with robotic-arm assistance 

By: African News Agency      8th October 2019 In a first for the African continent, a full knee replacement operation has been carried out using the state-of-the-art Mako robotic arm assisted surgery system. According to Netcare, the surgery was performed at its Linksfield Hospital in Johannesburg.  

Iata welcomes outcomes of International Civil Aviation Assembly

By: Rebecca Campbell     8th October 2019 The global airline industry representative body, the International Air Transport Association (Iata), is pleased with the outcomes of last week’s fortieth Triennial Assembly of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO – the inter-governmental body which oversees civil aviation... 

Wits Business School head Sibisi resigns to pursue strategic development venture

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd October 2019 University of Witwatersrand (Wits) Business School head Dr Sibusiso Sibisi has announced his resignation, effective at the end of the year, to pursue a new strategic initiative within the university. Wits plans on setting up a new artificial intelligence, technology and finance initiative.  

Wits Business School head Sibisi resigns to pursue strategic development venture
Photo by Creamer Media's Dylan Slater
Outgoing Wits Business School head Dr Sibusiso Sibisi

Denel missile completes its development and is certified

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd October 2019 The Denel Dynamics A-Darter infrared homing short-range air-to-air missile (AAM) has received its Type Certificate. This marks the end of the qualification and certification programme for the weapon. The A-Darter has been jointly developed by South Africa and Brazil, having been originally... 

Denel missile completes its development and is certified
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
Denel Dynamics A-Darter missile (with a Seeker 400 unmanned aerial vehicle behind)

Rolls-Royce completes acquisition of German electrical aviation propulsion business

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd October 2019 Renowned UK industrial technology group Rolls-Royce announced on Tuesday that it had completed its purchase of Siemens’ eAircraft business. The deal was originally announced in June. eAircraft was the German electrification, automation and digitalisation group’s electric and hybrid-electric... 

Rolls-Royce completes acquisition of German electrical aviation propulsion business
Photo by Siemens
An Extra 330LE sports aeroplane, powered by a Siemens eAircraft-developed electric motor

CSIR researchers outline primary water quality research projects

By: Schalk Burger     27th September 2019 Scientists from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) this week provided insight into their primary research on water quality and water treatment. Three researchers detailed their research projects, which included designing and piloting a process to recover water and generate... 

For first time, rare molecule found in planet-forming disc

By: Rebecca Campbell     27th September 2019 Another important astronomical breakthrough has been made using a major Southern Hemisphere radio telescope array, in this latest case the Atacama Large Millimetre/submillimetre Array (ALMA), located in Chile. The publishing of the new breakthrough (in the Astrophysical Journal Letters) came... 

Alaris expands global footprint, grows full-year profits

By: Marleny Arnoldi     26th September 2019 JSE-listed radio frequency technology group Alaris Holdings on Wednesday said it performed “exceptionally well” in the financial year ended June 30, with profit up 25% year-on-year to R41.1-million. Basic earnings a share and headline earnings a share increased by 21% to 34.29c, compared with... 

Toyota unveils all-new connected car offering as standard 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      26th September 2019 Toyota South Africa Motors, in collaboration with partners Altron and Vodacom Business, has deployed connectivity features and in-car Wi-Fi on all new Toyota and Lexus models from September. Natasha Odendaal tells us more. 

Toyota unveils all-new connected car offering as standard
Toyota unveils all-new connected car offering as standard

MeerKAT radio telescope makes a major discovery in the galactic centre

By: Rebecca Campbell     20th September 2019 South Africa’s 64-dish MeerKAT radio telescope array, which is spread over a diameter of eight kilometres in the Karoo region of the Northern Cape province, has allowed an international astronomy team to make a major discovery in the centre of our galaxy, the Milky Way. They have discovered... 

Health and safety practitioners need tech roadmap

By: Tracy Hancock     20th September 2019 Health and safety practitioners need to develop a technology roadmap to provide a foundation for planning aspects of safety that support technological advancements, says Department of Employment and Labour (DEL) director-general Thobile Lamati. “The roadmap will allow for the expansion or... 

Health and safety practitioners need tech roadmap
SAFETY EVOLUTION Occupational health and safety practitioners need to become more familiar with emerging technologies to support safety efforts

ShotSpotter deployed in Kruger National Park to fight rhino poaching

By: African News Agency      17th September 2019 A global technology company, ShotSpotter Inc. announced on Tuesday that it has deployed gunshot detection systems in the Kruger National Park in South Africa to help combat rhino poaching. The announcement was made ahead of World Rhino Day on September 22. 

SA SME Fund, TIA partner to invest in three venture capital funds

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th September 2019 The SA SME Fund and the government’s Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) have announced a pioneer partnership in the National System of Innovation – a public–private partnership to coinvest R350-million across three venture capital funds. The funds are OneBio Seed Investment Fund, a biotechnology... 

Mapping project seeks to secure 'invisible' indigenous lands

By: Reuters     13th September 2019 An online project mapping all of the world's indigenous lands will help secure legal rights, and alert communities to the potential threats of illegal logging and mining, land and indigenous rights groups said on Friday. LandMark is compiling maps from dozens of indigenous organisations for its... 

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