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Technology & Communications News

Elementary discovery is announced

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 In June it was announced that two new elements have been discovered. They have atomic numbers 116 and 118. A conventional periodic table of the elements stops at 104, or 103 if it is older, or at some lower number if it is even older! Elements up to uranium, which has the atomic number 92, can be... 

Contract strategy slashes costs

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Alliancing, a contract strategy not well known in South Africa, but applied successfully on mega projects in the global oil and gas industry, is working well for Mossgas and Dresser Kellogg Energy Services (DKES), the programme manager for the EM gasfield development in the Bredasdorp basin. In... 

Novel gene technology is unveiled for herbicide-resistant crops

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 A novel gene technology being developed under the trademark of Acuron has been unveiled by Novartis Crop Protection and Novartis Seeds of the US. The Acuron gene provides tolerance to a class of broad-spectrum herbicides. When inserted into crops, the gene will provide tolerance to a class of... 

Arguing for Coega

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Global economic growth continues to present industrial development opportunities to supply world markets, while a shortfall in certain strategic world markets has been forecast. New industrial development is needed to meet this demand. The trend towards the global village increasingly means that... 

Big contract for fledgeling firm

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Fledgeling Gauteng architectural firm Paragon is making inroads into the South African building-design market after being contracted to design one of the first buildings to be established at the R3-billion Melrose Arch development, reports architect Henning Rasmuss. The company, which was... 

R600m phase one on schedule for Nov 2000

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Construction of the R600-million first phase of the R3-billion Melrose Arch project is on schedule, with completion expected by November 2000, reports Mine Pension Fund Properties CE Jan Groenewald. Comprising the Melrose North triangular island between the M1 and Atholl Oaklands road, just south... 

Hurry, apply for a competitiveness grant

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 A competitiveness fund has been established by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) through a R100-million loan from the World Bank which will provide financial support for improving the competitiveness of private sector South African companies. As a cost-sharing grant scheme (CSGS) the... 

Even resource industry can be resourceful

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Something said by the Deputy PM of Canada, Herb Gray, during a luncheon organised by the South Africa-Canada Chamber of Business in Johannesburg a couple of weeks back, really got me thinking. In his speech, Gray insisted that successful economies of the twenty-first century will be determined... 

We print first image from SA’s own satellite

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Engineering News today becomes the first medium to print an image transmitted back to earth by South Africa’s first satellite in space. The Sunsat satellite successfully transmitted the image back to the ground-station based at Stellenbosch University’s department of electrical and... 

One of SA’s largest single structures

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Towering 114 m above sea level and extending 105 m below, the FA production platform is one of the largest single structures ever constructed in South Africa. Supporting it all is a steel-lattice structure or ‘jacket’, itself 124-m-high and weighing nearly 14 500 t. The jacket is... 

Canadians add extra byte

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 A bilateral projectvalued at C$3,5-million over three years is being realised between the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Canadian government through the Canadian International Development Agency (Cida) to study and develop the South African information technology (IT) industry.... 

Computer model used

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Developments in the field of three-dimensional (3D) computer-aided modelling show remarkable results in the development of the structural design of the R3-billion Melrose Arch project, reports Lillicrap Crutchfield design engineer Con Strydom. The consulting civil and structural engineering... 

IT joint ventures sought

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 The Gauteng Economic Development Agency (GEDA) is seeking joint venture partners in the information technology (IT) industry following requests from a number of Indian companies. One Indian company (Project 1), which has operations worldwide and a proven record in software development, e-commerce... 

New phone moves from the ears to the eyes

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Cellular technology has taken the first step in moving from the ears to the eyes with the launch of what is reportedly the world’s first media mobile phone by cellular giant Nokia. Due to be launched locally in September this year, the Nokia 7110 dual-band phone is the first wireless... 

Internet joint venture

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 NETHERLANDS Internet service provider World Online International has formed a joint venture with cellular network operator Vodacom to expand its Internet Service Provider Yebo!Net. In terms of the deal the service provider will own 50% of the new joint venture company. Vodacom Group CEO Alan... 

Funds shortage hinders telecom competition

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 The South African Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (Satra) does not have the resources in its R64-million budget to begin the process of setting up the framework for a competitive domestic telecommunications environment. Industry observers believe that, unless such a framework is worked... 

Authority issues warning to cell operators

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 The head of the South African Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (Satra) has issued a stern warning to the two cellular incumbents, MTN and Vodacom, not to behave in a manner that could be construed as anti-competitive once a third operator is licenced. In an interview with Engineering News,... 

Control buoy only second of its kind

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 A special unmanned control buoy, which is at the cutting edge of technology and only the second of its kind in the world, will be the only visible sign of EM gasfield activity once the development of the field has been completed. The bright yellow buoy, currently under construction by J Ray... 

Towards third-generation mobile phones

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 NINE global leaders in wireless communications have announced the formation of a new focus group to promote an Internet protocol (IP)-based wireless system for third-generation mobile communications technology. The group, called 3G.IP, consists of BT, AT&T Wireless Services, Rogers Cantel,... 

Melrose Arch to Bladerunner – the future of the city is here

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Is the R3-billion Melrose Arch project in Johannesburg, which embraces the concept of ‘new urbanism’, the forerunner to the science fiction (SF) concept of an arcology, a self-contained city in a single building? Perhaps the most famous SF rendering of this concept is in Ridley... 

Fruit transport bin partnership formed

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Johannesburg company Batecor has formed an agreement with Clip-Lok International to own, operate and hire out a revolutionary patented bulk bin to the international fruit industry. These rights also extend to the manufacturing and marketing of the full range of Clip-Lok products within the... 

Plant-automation success story

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Hi-tech integration company IST Industria,l of Pretoria, is an appointed system integrator for Schneider Electric products. The company has, over the past eight years, completed various installations using many Schneider products. Its focus lies in the provision of innovative, cost-effective,... 

Customer demand for innovative solutions

By: System Author     25th June 1999 A worldwide specialist in electrical distri- bution, industrial control and automation, Schneider Electric is active through a highly-skilled network of local and international partners, reports marketing manager Dudley Miller. These include distributors, systems integrators (SIs), panel builders... 

Alu-cans strike gold

By: System Author     25th June 1999 In just five years since the introduction of the aluminium beverage can to South Africa, the recycling of these cans has grown into a multimillion-rand industry. Aluminium Can Recycling Association (Acra) GM Henning Viljoen indicates that the yearly recovery rate of aluminium beverage cans in... 

Extrusion technology for new millennium

By: System Author     25th June 1999 What’s next in aluminium extrusion technology for the new millennium will be unveiled at the seventh yearly Aluminium Extrusion Technology Seminar & Exposition, ET 2000, to be held in Chicago in the US from May 16 to 19, 2000. The event – which is the longest-running event dealing... 

Turn on for computer literacy

By: System Author     25th June 1999 A restructured campus-licensing agreement (CLA) scheme has been established by software giant Microsoft, aimed mainly at augmenting computer literacy among tertiary students – an area which has long been a cause for concern among those in the information technology (IT) sector in South... 

Presentation skills are the key to maintaining good business relations

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Looking into the twenty-first century, the challenge to marketers will be to find innovative and strategic ways of marketing their products. This rapid change is making companies relook at their marketing strategies. Focused marketing support and innovative tactics will become increasingly... 

Imported profiles now made in South Africa

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Automation specialist RM Automation, of Randburg, Gauteng, has opted for local manufacture of aluminium profiles previously imported at high cost. These profiles are required to build various frameworks used, in turn, to build special-purpose machinery for clients, turnkey projects, or system... 

$1bn Nigeria project set to get nod by Nov

By: System Author     25th June 1999 It is likely that the final go-ahead for a $1-billion gas-to-liquids plant in Nigeria will be obtained following Sasol and Chevron’s respective board meetings in November this year. The two petrochemical companies have been studying the construction of a 30 000- barrel-a-day plant since... 

Forestry to boost rural development

By: System Author     25th June 1999 SOUTH Africa’s forestry industry has a major role to play in the rural development drive that President Mbeki is expected to initiate as part of government’s attack on poverty. Foresty has the potential to create jobs and promote industrial development, but must continue to improve... 

R100-million global business for Gauteng gas specialist

By: System Author     25th June 1999 IN a bold export plan that is set to develop into a R100-million-a-year global business by 2001, Gauteng gas company Afrox is taking its new locally-designed and -produced gas equipment product range into new international markets. This major new dimension to the globalisation of Afrox is the... 

Novel plasma dross-treatment project hots up

By: System Author     25th June 1999 A dross-treatment project using plasma as the heat source is being researched by Eskom’s research and development section, Technology Research Investigations (TRI), together with an industrial partner. This type of system is already being operated by an international company in Canada using... 

Millennium challenge for aluminium

By: System Author     25th June 1999 There is no doubt that the start of the new millennium holds many things for South Africa as a whole, and the aluminium industry in particular, says John Askeland, newly-elected chairperson of the Aluminium Federation of Southern Africa (Afsa). “Some are clearly opportunities; some are... 

One of South Africa’s first private universities

By: System Author     25th June 1999 The marketplace desperately needs people who are well qualified and who have the necessary practical skills. Skills-orientated education in South Africa received a big boost when Midrand Campus started operating as a university from January. Current and prospective students have the opportunity... 

Aircraft demand to soar over next 20 years

By: System Author     25th June 1999 More than 15 500 new jetliners valued at US$1,3-trillion will be required by passenger and cargo airlines between 1999 and 2018. This figure has emerged from Airbus Industrie’s latest global market forecast which, for the first time, also contains a comprehensive review of the cargo market.... 

Tenders out for farmer training project

By: System Author     25th June 1999 An extension and training support model for emerging farmers in the Nkomazi region in Mpumalanga is being developed by the Mpumalanga Department of Agriculture. “The overall purpose of this pilot project is to reorganise and improve extension and training services on the Nkomazi irrigation... 

South African–German navy equipment deal

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Midrand-based high-tech company Analysis, Management & Systems (AMS) has signed a co-operation agreement with one of Europe’s key navy equipment suppliers, Signaal Germany. The agreement will enable AMS to supply submarine and ship equipment to the SA Navy, as well as provide maintenance,... 

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