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Technology & Communications News

South Africa should push energy efficiency

By: Rebecca Campbell     Updated 3 hours ago A report commissioned by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and compiled by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) has called for energy efficiency to be given “the priority it deserves” in future versions of the country’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). The report, “The State... 

Ethiopia plans to split telecoms monopoly in two to spur competition

By: Reuters     Updated 7 hours ago Ethiopia plans to sell a 30% to 40% stake in its State-run telecoms monopoly to big telecoms companies and will split the company in two to spur competition, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said on Monday. Selling stakes in its lucrative telecoms monopoly and other assets could open Ethiopia, one of... 

Defence group upgrading imagery service for civil, military clients

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th June 2018 The Intelligence business of Airbus Defence and Space (Airbus DS) will soon be able to provide clients with a digital platform for imagery (largely, but not solely, from satellites). Called OneAtlas, it is the result of years of development work and testing by the company, which operates its own... 

Aerospace facility aims to help country master new technologies

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th June 2018 In South Africa, the aerospace and defence industries have a responsibility to provide technological leadership for the rest of the economy. This is because they are leading sectors for the development, introduction and use of innovations and new technologies, argues Centurion Aerospace Village... 

Averda launches hazardous waste management system

By: Nadine James     15th June 2018 Healthcare institutions have a legal duty to ensure that their hazardous waste is managed responsibly, and Averda has introduced the Averda TruTrak to demonstrate its commitment to the responsible management of hazardous waste products. Averda South Africa healthcare head Eugene Barnard explains... 

Averda launches hazardous waste management system
EUGENE BARNARD The Averda TruTrak system enables clients to access automated waste-tracking and record-keeping capabilities through an online client portal

Industry 4.0 to add benefits across the entire value chain

By: Schalk Burger     14th June 2018 The nascent industrial revolution happening across the world, termed Industry 4.0, is helping to improve the entire value chain through the digitalisation of all processes and the integration and improvement of the interdependent processes, says industrial systems multinational Siemens Digital... 

South Africa’s metrology institute reports successful food safety conference

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th June 2018 The National Metrology Institute of South Africa (NMISA) announced earlier this week that it had held its first Africa Food Safety Workshop during the first week of this month, in Pretoria. The event was attended by delegates form South Africa, Africa and the rest of the world. They represented... 

SOURCE hydropanel launches in S Africa

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th June 2018 Zero Mass Water has launched its SOURCE hydropanel, which applies thermodynamics, materials science and controls technology to produce potable drinking water from only sunlight and air, in South Africa.  

SOURCE hydropanel launches in S Africa
Zero Mass Water's SOURCE hydropanel

MTN aims to launch mobile service in Namibia around August

By: Reuters     13th June 2018 MTN Group, Africa's biggest mobile telecoms firm, is aiming to launch a mobile service in Namibia around the end of August, a company executive told Reuters. Currently state-owned operator MTC dominates in Namibia, a country of two-million people. 

Digital revolution sees ticketless rail future, says Trenitalia

By: Irma Venter     13th June 2018 The digital revolution will soon affect rail operations at a station and ticketing level, said Trenitalia passenger affairs deputy director Enrico Trapazzo at Africa Rail, held in Johannesburg, on Wednesday. Barrier-less ticketing will enable passengers to walk straight through a station and... 

CSIR researching social media use for public safety

By: Schalk Burger     11th June 2018 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on Monday detailed work researchers are doing to put social media to use in identifying public safety incidents, including traffic collisions, crime incident patterns, emergencies, terrorism incidents and pandemics, and to develop tools... 

CSIR researching social media use for public safety

Altron acquires iS Partners Group

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th June 2018 Allied Electronics (Altron) is moving to acquire the entire issued share capital of iS Partners for R225-million, effective July 1. Through wholly owned subsidiary Altron TMT, a share sale agreement was concluded that included iS Partners primary subsidiaries Karabina Solutions and Zetta Business... 

Vodacom embarks on new R17.5bn BEE deal 

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th June 2018 Telecommunications giant Vodacom has initiated a R17.5-billion deal that will increase its effective black economic empowerment (BEE) ownership to about 20% and provide exposure to Vodacom's local and international operations. The transaction will see existing BEE partners YeboYethu exchange... 

Vodacom embarks on new R17.5bn BEE deal
Photo by Creamer Media
Vodacom CEO Shameel Joosub

First African tetrapods discovered in South Africa

By: Anine Kilian     8th June 2018 Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, together with South African palaeontologist Dr Rob Gess, on Friday announced the discovery of the first African fossils of Devonian tetrapods, or four-legged vertebrates. The two new species, named Tutusius umlambo, after Archbishop... 

First African tetrapods discovered in South Africa
Photo by Dylan Slater
Tetrapod fossil

Court order delays implementation of new end-user regulations

By: Natasha Odendaal     8th June 2018 Mobile operator Cell C has succeeded in its court bid to postpone the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (Icasa’s) stipulated deadline for the implementation of the end-user and subscriber services charter regulations. The High Court on Thursday granted the urgent interdict to... 

AI can optimise manufacturing processes; awareness needed

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     8th June 2018 Artificial intelligence (AI), data and automation tools can aid manufacturers in enhancing and optimising their processes, says Cape Town-based machine learning startup DataProphet cofounder and MD Frans Cronje. The company specialises in developing AI solutions for the manufacturing industry,... 

AI can optimise manufacturing processes; awareness needed
FRANS CRONJE Artificial intelligence should be seen as a tool for taking skills, knowledge and experience, and sharing it among new workers entering the world of employment

Company can save manufacturers years in R&D

8th June 2018 The world of augmented reality (AR) offers manufacturers a solution that can save them years in research and development, says information and communications technology provider T-Systems manufacturing and automotive sales and service management head Dereshin Pillay. AR can also save... 

Company can save  manufacturers years in R&D
DERESHIN PILLAY AR can also save manufacturing companies money spent on building, testing, rebuilding and retesting prototypes

Companies moving towards emerging technologies

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     8th June 2018 There is strong indication that manufacturing companies will in the short term start using emerging technologies. This is according to ‘The Mobile Corporation in South Africa 2018’ report, based on research conducted by research organisation World Wide Worx, in partnership with enterprise... 

Companies moving towards  emerging technologies
DEIRDRE FRYER Using the most suitable technology in the right areas can give rise to large cost reductions for businesses

S Africa must maintain cost-competitive sector

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     8th June 2018 It is vital for South Africa to maintain a manufacturing sector that is internationally cost competitive and can produce quality end-products, says Germiston-based material transfer solutions provider Weba Chute Systems MD Mark Baller. “The manufacturing industry has been under a lot of... 

S Africa must maintain cost-competitive sector
LATEST TECHNOLOGY Weba Chute Systems uses the latest techniques and technologies to ensure optimum accuracy during the design and engineering phases, which also facilitate improved efficiencies

Indaba will create intra-Africa trade opportunities

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     8th June 2018 With the 2018 Manufacturing Indaba’s focus being on the development of intra-Africa trade, event organiser Siyenza Management MD Liz Hart says the event will bring key stakeholders together to create opportunities for engagement and dialogue. She tells Engineering News that Africa has many of... 

Indaba will create intra-Africa trade opportunities
EXPANDING EXHIBITION Siyenza Management aims to expand the Manufacturing Indaba – the larger the event, the more companies to engage with and to explore added business opportunities

Companies use Securex, A-OSH to showcase products and services

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     8th June 2018 The Securex exhibition and its co-located A-OSH Expo successfully executed their twenty-fifth and eighth editions respectively, with several companies using the events as a launchpad for new products and services. Securex is Africa’s leading security and fire-protection trade exhibition, while... 

Icasa steps closer to priority markets review

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th June 2018 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has taken its next step in pursuing a priority markets review to identify markets for a regulatory review that could lead to lower communications costs. Icasa on Thursday embarked on public hearings on the discussion document on... 

MeerLICHT launch signals world’s first optical/radio telescope collaboration 

7th June 2018 The South African Astronomical Observatory and the Department of Science and Technology last month launched the MeerLICHT optical telescope at the Observatory site in Sutherland, which will be ‘the eye’ of the MeerKAT radio telescope. Marleny Arnoldi tells us more. 

MeerLICHT launch signals world’s first optical/radio telescope collaboration
MeerLICHT launch signals world’s first optical/radio telescope collaboration

Tanzania charges telecoms executives with fraud in tax evasion crackdown

By: Reuters     7th June 2018 Tanzanian prosecutors on Wednesday charged two chief executives of mobile phone companies and four other suspects with fraud as part of a crackdown against tax evasion in the East African nation. The executives charged were Le Van Dai, 35, managing director of Halotel Tanzania, owned by... 

Rhodes’ Centre for Biological Control awarded R68m contract to help control alien plants

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th June 2018 The newly-established Centre for Biological Control (CBC) at Rhodes University has been awarded a R68-million contract by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).  

Rhodes’ Centre for Biological Control awarded R68m contract to help control alien plants
DEA Deputy Director General Dr Guy Preston & Centre for Biological Control Director Professor Martin Hill

Necsa has suspended radioisotope production because of a non-risk technical problem 

By: Rebecca Campbell     6th June 2018 The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) announced on Tuesday that there had been a “non-risk” incident at its NTP Radioisotopes subsidiary. This incident resulted in the activation of safety protocols, which temporarily halted the production of medical radioisotopes. At no time was... 

Necsa has suspended radioisotope production because of a non-risk technical problem
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
An aerial view of Necsa’s complex at Pelindaba, west of Pretoria

Davies launches R1bn ICT factory in East London

By: African News Agency      6th June 2018 South Africa has not been able to manufacture enough electronics products but has relied on imported tablets, cell phones and all kinds of electronic equipment, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies said on Tuesday. "What we are witnessing today [Tuesday], is a company that is getting into... 

MTN continues Turkcell defence

By: Natasha Odendaal     5th June 2018 South African telecommunications giant MTN on Tuesday said representatives from South Africa’s Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation obtained documents from MTN’s internal and external legal counsel over the ongoing legal dispute between it and Turkish mobile operator Turkcell. Turkcell... 

Telecoms company Seacom upgrades subsea cable system

By: African News Agency      5th June 2018 Pan African telecommunications company Seacom said on Tuesday it had upgraded its key submarine network system from its southern and eastern African coastline landings into Europe at a total capacity of 1.5 terabits per second, adding 500G of new capacity on the system. Seacom said the latest... 

'Hi, I'm Pepper' – first humanoid robot in South Africa gently introduces herself

By: News24Wire      5th June 2018 At your next hotel check-in, you might just be assisted by a robot. Well, perhaps not quite yet, but the first humanoid robot in South Africa is an indicator of the capability of artificial intelligence (AI). Pepper, a humanoid chat robot was recently unveiled at Nedbank's digital-branch, the... 

Global atomic agency stresses importance of safety skills development

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st June 2018 The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) signed two agreements with African nuclear regulatory bodies at the National Nuclear Regulator's (NNR’s) recent 2nd Nuclear Regulatory Information Conference. The agreements were designated "Practical Arrangements" and were between the IAEA and the... 

Small modular reactors offer promise, but face major challenges

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st June 2018 Worldwide, there is significant interest in the development of small and medium modular reactors (SMRs). “At the moment there are 11 countries developing about 50 SMR designs and four units are under construction or have a certified design,” said University of Pretoria Mechanical and Aeronautical... 

Technology uptake to solve industry challenges

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     1st June 2018 Although there has been some progress in establishing continuous connectivity in the form of WiFi networks on railway systems in South Africa, political issues have limited the uptake of technologies in the rail industry, says access network infrastructure provider Ruckus Networks sub-Saharan... 

Technology uptake to  solve industry challenges
RIAAN GRAHAM A challenge associated with introducing and implementing IoT technologies is that there is currently no clear standard within the IoT sphere

Gauteng now using drone to monitor project delivery

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st June 2018 The Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development (GDID) last week officially launched its drone programme to help monitor the timely delivery of construction projects under its portfolio. The drone will be used in conjunction with the department’s electronic monitoring hub and project nerve... 

Datatec optimistic about full Westcon turnaround within two years

By: Natasha Odendaal     1st June 2018 International information and communications technology company Datatec expects its embattled Westcon International portfolio to return to profitability within the next year, with a full turnaround emerging within two years. Datatec, which recently disposed of its businesses in North America and... 

Analytical tools seen as increasingly essential to water management

By: Schalk Burger     1st June 2018 It is inevitable that water utilities will continue to face various challenges, but technology can be used to ensure visibility of water quality throughout the value chain, and automatically communicated to stakeholders and consumers.   In this regard, investment in analytics can be a quick win... 

Analytical tools seen as increasingly essential to water management
MAANDA RAMUTUMBU Analytical tools can empower utilities to manage their water resources more efficiently and enable them to take proactive steps

Utilities urged to increase cyber-physical integration to improve cyberdefence

By: Schalk Burger     1st June 2018 A security strategy that integrates cyber and physical security operations is best practice to protect against increasing cyberattacks and cybercriminal acts that are a challenge for utilities to mitigate, says BT Africa IT Security Sales head Alessandro Postiglioni. Physical and virtual assets... 

Utilities urged to increase cyber-physical integration  to improve cyberdefence
ALESSANDRO POSTIGLIONI Refined controls and new technologies allow utilities to build effective prevention capabilities across business networks and the growing number of endpoints in their environments
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