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Technology & Communications News

ATNS launches 3D mobile simulator

By: Marleny Arnoldi     13th December 2018 Transport Minister Dr Blade Nzimande on Thursday unveiled Air Traffic and Navigation Services’ (ATNS’) new three-dimensional (3D) mobile simulator during the commemoration of the annual International Civil Aviation Day, in Mbombela, Mpumalanga. ATNS chairperson Simphiwe Thobela said the 3D... 

MTN, Nigerian central bank dispute will be over 'very soon' – regulator

By: Reuters     13th December 2018 The Nigerian telecoms regulator said on Thursday that an $8.1-billion dispute between South African telecoms group MTN and the Nigerian central bank "is being resolved and very soon it will be over." Nigeria's government "is disposed to (an) amicable resolution," Umar Garba Dambatta, executive... 

Government launches e-Recruitment system  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th December 2018 The Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) has officially launched government’s e-Recruitment system, which enables job seekers to apply for positions in the public service through an online platform. The system was launched by Public Service and Administration Minister Ayanda... 

Government launches e-Recruitment system
Public Service and Administration Minister Ayanda Dlodlo

Advocate Pieter Holl appointed Innovation Hub CEO

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th December 2018 The Gauteng Growth and Development Agency (GDDA) and its subsidiary Innovation Hub have appointed Advocate Pieter Holl CEO of Innovation Hub. He succeeds Dr McClean Sibanda, who served as acting CEO from June to November.  

Scientists discover how immune systems remember, retreat pathogens

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th December 2018 A study published in Nature Genetics earlier this month has detailed, for the first time, the mechanism that allows the immune system to remember prior exposures to, for example, pathogens (micro-organisms causing infection), and then trigger the right response to reinfection. The study was... 

5G spectrum could boost global GDP by $565bn

By: Natasha Odendaal     12th December 2018 A new study by GSMA shows that the release of the right fifth-generation (5G) spectrum could generate an additional $565-billion in global gross domestic product (GDP) and $152-billion in tax revenue from 2020 to 2034. Next-generation 5G services, leveraging sufficient millimetre wave (mmWave)... 

Nigerian court adjourns MTN, central bank case until January 22

By: Reuters     12th December 2018 A Nigerian judge adjourned on Wednesday a hearing over an $8.1-billion dispute between South African telecoms giant MTN and the central bank until January 22. The dispute is over the transfer of $8.1-billion of funds which Nigeria's central bank said the company had sent abroad in breach of... 

New Necsa board has important issues to consider

By: Rebecca Campbell     11th December 2018 Major decisions are going to have to be taken about the future of the South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa), new Necsa board chairperson Dr Rob Adam told Engineering News Online on Tuesday. A totally new board for the corporation was announced by the government on December 6, the new... 

New Necsa board has important issues to consider
Photo by Creamer Media
Necsa chairperson Dr Rob Adam

EOH CEO review leads group to focus on four operating units

By: Schalk Burger     11th December 2018 A review of the business by JSE-listed EOH CEO Stephen van Coller during his first 100 days in the position has led the company to refine and expand its reporting and management into four distinct operating units, which enables it to better support these businesses with different focuses, capital... 

Liquid secures $180m investment

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th December 2018 Liquid Telecom has obtained a $180-million investment from UK development finance institution CDC Group to expand its high-speed broadband connectivity and Internet and cloud-based services into underserved communities and the technology start-up ecosystem across Africa. The investment will... 

High-performance computing conference stimulates cyberinfrastructure development

By: Marleny Arnoldi     11th December 2018 The Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC) Conference, held in Cape Town earlier this month, provided a platform for students to showcase their skills in building supercomputers and ideas around preventing cybercrime. The CHPC is one of three primary pillars of the national... 

Bloodhound supersonic car project halted

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th December 2018 Project Bloodhound, the initiative to break the land-speed world record, has been halted, owing to a lack of funds, BBC News and other media reported at the weekend. Engineering News in October reported that Bloodhound Programme, the UK company behind the project, had entered into administration,... 

MTN says still in talks with Nigerian authorities 

By: Reuters     10th December 2018 South African telecoms firm MTN Group was still in talks with Nigerian authorities over an $8.1-billion dispute and a $2-billion tax demand in a bid to reach an agreement, Africa's biggest mobile operator said on Monday. The dispute is over the transfer of $8.1-billion of funds which Nigeria's... 

Liquid to invest $400m in Egypt over three years

By: Natasha Odendaal     10th December 2018 Pan-African telecoms group Liquid Telecom plans to inject $400-million into Egypt’s network infrastructure and data centres over the next three years. This follows the signing of a partnership agreement between Telecom Egypt, which is working to connect Egyptian businesses to the rest of Africa... 

New CSIR board unveiled

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th December 2018 Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane announced the new board for the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on Monday. The CSIR is a multidisciplinary research and development (R&D) organisation that falls under the aegis of the Department of Science and... 

Europe was growing wary of Huawei even before CFO's arrest

By: Bloomberg     7th December 2018 The shock arrest of Huawei Technologies’ chief financial officer comes at a crunch time in Europe, as governments decide whether to crack down on the Chinese technology giant. Before Canadian officials detained Wanzhou Meng on December 1 over potential violations of US sanctions on Iran,... 

Sci-Ba reports increase in demand for green-tech advice

By: Schalk Burger     7th December 2018 Technical and scientific consulting services report an increase in demands from mines and industries to advise them about sustainability and green technologies, as well as how these will impact on processing and standards, says Sci-Ba co-founder and director Chazanne Long. Much of the consulting... 

Artisan training moving to high technology

By: Schalk Burger     7th December 2018 Artisans are receiving training on cyberphysical systems, which are hallmarks of modern industrial systems and are becoming commonplace in industry to prepare for employment in Industry 4.0 companies, says industry training college Colliery Training College (CTC) MD Johan Venter. For example,... 

3D printing surging globally and South Africa is making its mark

By: Rebecca Campbell     7th December 2018 The global take-off of Additive Manufacturing (AM, popularly called 3D printing), it is now apparent, took place some six years ago. "2012 was a turning point in AM, globally," consultancy Wohlers Associates President Terry Wohlers tells "Engineering News". "The technology really gained... 

3D printing surging globally and South Africa is making its mark

Icasa in third initiative to lower telecoms costs

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th December 2018 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has embarked on a third intervention in an effort to reduce the cost of communication in South Africa – a market inquiry into mobile broadband services. The new inquiry emerges shortly after the amendment and final publication of... 

SABS laboratories awarded 20-year commendation

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     6th December 2018 Three of the South African Bureau of Standards’ (SABS’s) testing laboratories have been awarded commendations by the South African National Accreditation System (Sanas) for maintaining continuous accreditation status during the last 20 years, SABS Laboratory Services Division executive Johan Louw... 

SABS laboratories awarded 20-year commendation
Johan Louw, Executive: Laboratory Services; Duke Nene, Manager Explosion Prevention Technology; Hanli Hendriksz, Quality Manager and Sihle Qwabe, Senior Manager Electro-technical Engineering

ELB Engineering obtains regulatory approval to sell satellite antenna terminals in South Africa

By: Natasha Odendaal     6th December 2018 Engineering firm ELB Engineering Services and partner Kymeta Corp have successfully obtained approval from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) for the sale and distribution of the Kymeta KyWay u7 terminal devices in South Africa. The Icasa green light occurred four... 

Springs-based fuel cell SEZ approved  

By: Nadine James     5th December 2018 The special economic zone (SEZ) for fuel cell development, proposed for development by the Gauteng Industrial Development Zone initiative and Impala Platinum (Implats), has been approved, Implats fuel cell coordinator Fahmida Smith told attendees at the International Partnership for Hydrogen and... 

EPWP biometric system goes live

By: Natasha Odendaal     5th December 2018 Gauteng’s new biometric identification system for the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) has gone live at the Helen Joseph Hospital, in Johannesburg, kicking off the first part of a province-wide deployment. The “cutting edge” biometric and facial recognition system is expected, over the next... 

HySA strategy bears fruit with multiple projects nearing commercialisation 

By: Nadine James     5th December 2018 The Hydrogen South Africa (HySA) strategy has produced multiple inventions and pilot projects that are nearing commercialisation, Department of Science and Technology Hydrogen and Energy chief director Dr Rebecca Maserumule told attendees of the thirtieth International Partnership for Hydrogen... 

Science body pushes for better human genetics ethics guidelines in South Africa

By: News24Wire      4th December 2018 The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) has released a study it says is aimed at creating a more certain regulatory environment for government departments on matters relating to human genetics and the human genome. The authors of the study, titled Human Genetics and Genomics in South... 

South African telescope confirms new evidence of white dwarf cannibalising its companion star

By: News24Wire      4th December 2018 Work by researchers operating the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) in the Northern Cape has confirmed that a white dwarf star is cannibalising its companion star. The find has led astronomers to change their view on how massive radiation bursts occur on white dwarf stars. The star,... 

South African telescope confirms new evidence of white dwarf cannibalising its companion star
Photo by Marleny Arnoldi
Southern African Large Telescope

Nigerian court adjourns case between MTN and central bank to December 12 – judge

By: Reuters     4th December 2018 A Lagos judge on Tuesday adjourned a hearing in an $8.1-billion dispute between South African telecoms firm MTN Group and Nigeria's central bank until December 12 after lawyers said they wanted to report back on settlement talks. The central bank has accused the firm of illegally sending... 

Airbus unveils first base for its very high altitude UAV

By: Rebecca Campbell     3rd December 2018 Europe-based global aerospace and defence company Airbus Defence and Space announced in Australia on Monday that it had opened the first operational launch site for its Zephyr “High Altitude Pseudo-Satellite” (Haps) at the Western Australian town of Wyndham. The Zephyr is a very high... 

Airbus unveils first base for its very high altitude UAV
Photo by Airbus
An artist’s impression of a Zephyr S flying in the stratosphere

Chinese brands driving Q3 smartphone growth

By: Natasha Odendaal     3rd December 2018 Chinese brands Huawei and Xiaomi are driving the growth of global smartphone sales, despite sales for most mobile phone manufacturers, including Samsung, declining, research and advisory company Gartner said on Monday. During the third quarter of this year, global smartphone sales to end-users... 

DST hosts hydrogen fuel cell technology conference

By: Nadine James     3rd December 2018 Global stakeholders in the multibillion-dollar fuel cell industry will meet in Pretoria this week for the thirtieth Steering Committee Meeting of the International Partnership for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells in the Economy (IPHE). The Department of Science and Technology (DST) will host the meeting... 

Nigerian court to hear MTN and attorney general case on Feb 7 – registrar

By: Reuters     3rd December 2018 A Lagos court hearing concerning a dispute between South African telecoms firm MTN Group and Nigeria's attorney general over a $2-billion tax demand will take place on Feb. 7, a registrar said on Monday. MTN faces a $2-billion tax demand from the country's attorney general, a claim which the... 

Vodacom helps govt cut operational spend; develops apps for public service efficiency

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th November 2018 Mobile operator Vodacom has assisted government in reducing some of its operational expenditure by around 56% in participating national and provincial public institutions over the last two years, through the company’s mobile communication services transversal (RT15) communications contract. The... 

Vodacom helps govt cut operational spend; develops apps for public service efficiency
Vodacom business chief sales officer Mickey Mashale

International nuclear school for Africa successfully held in South Africa for second time

By: Rebecca Campbell     30th November 2018 The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has reported that its second South Africa-IAEA Nuclear Energy Management (NEM) School, held in Johannesburg earlier this month, was attended by 23 young professionals from 13 African countries. The School was organised in conjunction with the... 

Western Cape govt partners with Liquid Telecom to expand WiFi access across province

By: African News Agency      30th November 2018 Western Cape Premier Helen Zille will oversee the signing of a deal with Liquid Telecom for a partnership on an expanded public WiFi network, the provincial government said. The expanded service will see a total of 1 600 public WiFi hotspot sites operate across the province with an increased data... 

Digital disruption to bring core engineering skills to fore

By: Schalk Burger     30th November 2018 Far from posing a threat to engineering as a profession, local engineering experts believe that the digital transformation of industries and of society is amplifying the importance of the core competencies of engineering disciplines and bringing them to the fore. Defining and solving complex... 

Digital disruption to bring core engineering skills to fore

Virtual, augmented reality now part of construction processes

By: Schalk Burger     30th November 2018 Virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and building information modelling (BIM) in construction and consulting engineering are important elements of a fully integrated approach to project delivery, says multinational engineering consultancy Aecom Buildings and Places digital project... 

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