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Science Engineering Technology

Business R&D showing signs of recovery

By: Keith Campbell     28th April 2017 The South African Government seeks to increase the country’s investment in research and development (R&D) by 100% from the R29-billion of 2014/2015 to to about R60-billion/year by 2020. In terms of percentage of gross domestic product (GDP), this would involve an increase from 0.77% to 1.5%.... 

Development of SA spatial data infrastructure needs to be accelerated

By: Keith Campbell     28th April 2017 Despite the fact that South Africa's Spatial Data Infrastructure Act was passed nearly 14 years ago, in 2003, with the intent of establishing the South African Spatial Data Infrastructure (SASDI), the Committee for Spatial Information (CSI) and the Electronic Metadata Catalogue, among other... 

First survey of publicly funded intellectual property in SA launched

By: Keith Campbell     28th April 2017 Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor launched the first “South African National Survey of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer at Publicly Funded Research Institutions” recently in Pretoria. “The survey reveals many trends that we did not know before …. [T]his survey constitutes... 

Global shake-up in earth observation will affect South African sector, warns CSIR

By: Keith Campbell     28th April 2017 Worldwide, the Earth Observation (EO) sector is being shaken-up by disruptive innovations by major enterprises. "Globally, traditional EO value chains are changing radically due to technological developments, rapid commercialisation and operationalisation by, especially, leading IT [information... 

SpaceX’s reusable rocket completes second return journey

By: Dylan Slater     28th April 2017 Private rocket company SpaceX has successfully reused one of its Falcon 9 rockets to launch a commercial communications satellite – SES-10 – for communications satellite operator SES.  

SpaceX’s reusable rocket completes second return journey
UNPRECEDENTED LAUNCH A used Falcon 9 rocket launches from Nasa’s Kennedy Space Centre, in Florida

South African intellectual property agency seeking to stimulate innovation

By: Keith Campbell     26th April 2017 The Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC), an agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), has been holding talks with the Department of Higher Education about establishing a national Intellectual Property (IP), or Innovation, Academy, reported CIPC Executive Manager:... 

South African intellectual property agency seeking to stimulate innovation
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
The DTI office complex in Pretoria

Brazilian company unveils over-the-horizon radar

By: Keith Campbell     21st April 2017 Brazilian technology company IACIT Soluções Tecnológicas S/A (IACIT), which develops and produces air traffic control and management and maritime traffic control and management systems, weather radars, telemetry systems, and integrated networks (among other products and systems) for civil, public... 

Interest in nuclear energy said to be rising across sub-Saharan Africa

By: Keith Campbell     21st April 2017 There is more interest in nuclear energy in sub-Saharan Africa than is generally realised. According to the World Nuclear Association (WNA), countries in the region which are individually planning or considering nuclear power are Ghana, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda and... 

Interest in nuclear energy said to be rising across sub-Saharan Africa

South African R&D spending on the rise 

     20th April 2017 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Senior Deputy Editor Keith Campbell about the results of the country’s latest research and development survey and the highlights of the first South African National Survey of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer at publicly... 

South African R&D spending on the rise
South African R&D spending on the rise

South Africa’s space agency to support key Nepad programmes

By: Keith Campbell     19th April 2017 The South African National Space Agency (Sansa) and Nepad signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Wednesday under which the former will support various programmes of the latter with Earth observation products and services. (Nepad originally stood for New Partnership for Africa’s... 

South Africa’s space agency to support key Nepad programmes
Photo by South African National Space Agency
Nepad Agency CEO Dr Ibrahim Mayaki (left) and Sansa CEO Dr Val Munsami (right) after the signing of the MoU

France’s new nuclear firm pursuing SA research reactor deal

By: Keith Campbell     14th April 2017 Newly created French nuclear company TechnicAtome plans to bid for South Africa’s planned new research reactor. The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) is planning a p rogramme to replace its current research reactor, SAFARI-1, which is now more than 50 years old. "We are absolutely... 

Growth in laser gas noted by company

     14th April 2017 Laser application technology has seen substantial progress and development since the invention of the laser in the 1960s and gases and welding products supplier African Oxygen (Afrox) has experienced market growth over the years owing to its development of laser gases for different applications... 

Growth in laser gas  noted by company
CUTTING EDGE Afrox started penetrating the laser cutting market around 2005 and its growth in this field and of the market share for laser cutting has dramatically increased since then

Innovative projects making strides in laser industry

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th April 2017 The Laser Research Institute (LRI), part of the Physics Department at Stellenbosch University, has achieved notable research outputs during the past three years, which has resulted in several innovative projects such as ultrafast laser spectroscopy, as well as infrared spectroscopy and laser... 

Innovative projects making strides in laser industry
SIZEABLE DEVELOPMENT A robust miniature carbon dioxide laser test system for commercialisation and a large, high-pressure carbon dioxide laser to provide infrared light with Terawatt peak power are being developed

Laser-coding guide dispels misconceptions, enhances technology

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th April 2017 Global coding and marking specialist solutions provider Markem-Imaje, represented in Southern Africa by product identification solutions provider Pyrotec, has produced a guide focusing on laser-coding technology that aims to help manufacturers meet the technical challenges commonly encountered on... 

Laser-coding guide dispels misconceptions, enhances technology
CODING SOLUTION SmartLase is a laser-coding technology engineered by Markem-Imaje, designed to specifically meet the challenge faced on the fastest production lines

New laser source expands possibilities

     14th April 2017 International laser systems provider Trotec Laser has expanded the product portfolio of the Galvo marking lasers with a new laser source MOPA. The new laser source allows expanded possibilities for users when marking metals and plastics. With the MOPA laser, users are able to also mark plastics... 

New laser source expands possibilities
MAKING A MARK Trotec’s MOPA laser source is especially suitable for dark plastics, as its shorter pulses often produce “vivid”, lighter markings, which results in a higher contrast

R&D capitalises on global growth

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th April 2017 The National Laser Centre (NLC), part of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), is undertaking a Photonics Prototyping Facility (PPF) programme and is exploring advance manufacturing technologies, leveraging on the strong global growth of the laser technology sector. NLC PPF... 

R&D capitalises on global growth
Photo by Bloomberg
ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING Laser-based three-dimensional technology is mostly focused on industrial application, and presents a specific area for significant growth in the future

South Africa’s hydrogen fuel cell programme making steady progress

By: Keith Campbell     14th April 2017 The Department of Science and technology (DST) is pleased with the progress being made by the Hydrogen South Africa (HySA) research, development and innovation (RDI) programme. This is a natural resources beneficiation project, aimed at increasing the market for the country’s platinum reserves by... 

South Africa’s hydrogen fuel cell programme making steady progress

SA urged to focus on producing components for battery supply chains

By: Schalk Burger     13th April 2017 South Africa can use the development and local production of various battery components in global energy storage supply chains to develop local industrial capacity, says University of the Western Cape South African Institute for Advanced Material Chemistry director Professor Vladimir Linkov.... 

South African R&D spending on the rise but government aims yet higher

By: Keith Campbell     12th April 2017 The South African government seeks to increase the country’s investment in research and development (R&D) by 100% from the R29-billion of 2014/2015 to about R60-billion a year by 2020. In terms of percentage of gross domestic product (GDP), this would involve an increase from 0.77% to 1.5%. This... 

South African R&D spending on the rise but government aims yet higher
Science & Technology Minister Naledi Pandor

Survey on South African publicly-funded intellectual property launched

By: Keith Campbell     12th April 2017 Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor launched the first 'South African National Survey of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer at Publicly Funded Research Institutions' in Pretoria on Wednesday. “The survey reveals many trends that we did not know before . . . [T]his survey... 

Wits opens R6m isotope geoscience laboratory

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th April 2017 A new R6-million ultraclean isotope geoscience laboratory has been launched at the School of Geosciences at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits). The Wits Isotope Geoscience Laboratory (WIGL), working closely with the University of Johannesburg’s (UJ’s) Geology Department, aims to deliver a... 

South African nanosatellites to be launched soon as part of international project 

By: Keith Campbell     11th April 2017 Two South African-designed and built nanosatellites, designated nSight1 and ZA-Aerosat, are set to be launched into space next week, as part of a consignment of 28 nanosatellites from 23 countries. The entire shipment of nanosatellites will, according to current plans, be lifted into space by a... 

South African nanosatellites to be launched soon as part of international project
Photo by SCS Aerospace Group
SCS Space’s nSight1 nanosatellite

Printed titanium parts expected to save millions in Boeing Dreamliner costs

By: Reuters     11th April 2017 Boeing Co hired Norsk Titanium to print the first structural titanium parts for its 787 Dreamliner, a shift that the Norwegian three-dimensional (3-D) printing company said would eventually shave $2-million to $3-million off the cost of each plane. The contract announced on Monday is a major... 

Printed titanium parts expected to save millions in Boeing Dreamliner costs

CSIR warns global shake-up in Earth Observation will affect South African sector

By: Keith Campbell     10th April 2017 Worldwide, the Earth Observation (EO) sector is being shaken-up by disruptive innovations by major enterprises. "Globally, traditional EO value chains are changing radically due to technological developments, rapid commercialisation and operationalisation by, especially, leading IT [information... 

South African spatial data infrastructure is developing, but not as fast as desired 

By: Keith Campbell     10th April 2017 Despite the fact that South Africa's Spatial Data Infrastructure Act was passed nearly 14 years ago, in 2003, with the intent of establishing the South African Spatial Data Infrastructure (Sasdi), the Committee for Spatial Information (CSI) and the Electronic Metadata Catalogue, among other... 

New Sutherland laboratory adds another eye in the sky for Sansa

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     7th April 2017 The South African National Space Agency (Sansa) has unveiled an optical space research (OSR) laboratory at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) in Sutherland. This facility will be used solely for research and to host space monitoring projects with national and international partners. 

New Sutherland laboratory adds another eye in the sky for Sansa
The optical space research laboratory team

Data-rich Atlas shows SA having higher bio-energy potential than believed

By: Keith Campbell     7th April 2017 The South Africa Bio-energy Atlas, recently launched in Pretoria, will allow the country to identify opportunities for sustainable bio-energy and be able to achieve much more in terms of developing a Green Economy. This was affirmed by Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor in her keynote... 

Local company partners with global software solutions major

By: Mia Breytenbach     7th April 2017 Provider of integrated project cost management software solutions Ares Project Management LLC, subsidiary of Ares Holding Company, and South Africa-based, multi-layered consulting company Infracon Consulting launched their strategic partnership last month. The aim of this partnership is to serve... 

Local company partners with global software solutions major
SOFTWARE PROVISION Infracon Consulting will be able to sell and distribute Ares Prism, an enterprise project life-cycle management solution to manage the complete project life-cycle of capital projects

South Africa has real bioenergy potential

By: Keith Campbell     7th April 2017 "South Africa definitely has exploitable bio-energy potential," stated Council for Scientific and Industrial Research Principle Engineer Crescent Mushwana at the recent launch of the South Africa Bio-energy Atlas in Pretoria. "Bio-energy is feasible from organic waste, residues from forestry and... 

NexOptic unveils revolutionary flat lens slated to disrupt optics as we know it

By: Henry Lazenby     5th April 2017 Upstart Vancouver-based technology firm NexOptic Technology and acquisition target Spectrum Optix on Tuesday night for the first time publicly unveiled field test images taken with the company’s proprietary new Blade Optics telescope prototype, an invention that changes humanity’s understanding... 

NexOptic unveils revolutionary flat lens slated to disrupt optics as we know it
Photo by NexOptic Technology
The Spectrum Blade Optics telescope disrupts our 400-year old understanding of how lenses work

UK committed to developing R&D and trade with South Africa

By: Keith Campbell     31st March 2017 The British Government has assigned up to £35-million from its Prosperity Fund to South Africa. This money will be disbursed over the remaining period of the current UK Parliament (that is, until 2020). This was pointed out by outgoing British High Commissioner to South Africa, Dame Judith... 

‘Little Foot’ hominid is much younger than originally thought

By: African News Agency      30th March 2017 New research by the University of Johannesburg (UJ) and James Cook University (JCU) in Australia has found that the “Little Foot” hominid is much younger than originally thought. “A human ancestor thought to be 3.7-million years old, should be younger than 2.8-million years, says the newest... 

‘Little Foot’ hominid is much younger than originally thought

Stellenbosch University and CubeSpace to launch nanosatellite

By: News24Wire      27th March 2017 Stellenbosch University and CubeSpace are expected to launch a nanosatellite to the International Space Station (ISS) on Tuesday. The nanosatellite will be launched from the US on Monday, or Tuesday. 

Longer-ranged artillery shell unveiled by South African defence company

By: Keith Campbell     24th March 2017 South African defence company Rheinmetall Denel Munition (RDM) has reported that it has successfully qualified its 155 mm calibre M2005 Velocity Enhanced Artillery Projectile (VLAP). This is a longer-ranged enhancement of the company’s Assegai series of 155 mm artillery rounds. The qualification... 

South African in the Mars mix as race to the Red Planet heats up 

By: Dylan Slater     24th March 2017 It is 2031 and the next space race has started with the launch of the largest-ever interplanetary space rocket and spaceship carrying four carefully selected astronauts on a mission to establish a human settlement on Mars – a planet that is, on average, 225-million km away.  

South African in the Mars mix as race to the Red Planet heats up
Theoretical physicist Adriana Marais tells Engineering News about her dream to go to Mars. Camerawork and Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Innovative Kruger Park surveillance technology stops poachers in their tracks

By: News24Wire      17th March 2017 Two weeks after its introduction in January, the Kruger National Park's wide range surveillance technology, the Meerkat, managed to stop five out of nine detected rhino poaching incidents. "It's almost like the angel on your shoulder that can see where you cannot see and that makes it a lot safer... 

Amid challenges, power sector offers massive opportunities

By: Nadine James     17th March 2017 Although the power and electricity sector in Africa faces massive challenges, it also offers massive opportunities, says Power & Electricity World Africa (PEWA) event organiser Terrapinn.  

Amid challenges, power sector offers massive opportunities
MOMENT IN THE SUN Africa’s largest power and electricity event offers innovative, cost-effective means of tackling Africa’s power challenges
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