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by Mike Rycroft, Mark Botha and Chris Yelland, EE Publishers
It is well known that the price of electricity in South Africa has been too low for years. The generation capacity crisis in 2008 prompted a review of Eskom’s build programme and associated funding plan. The original expectation was that there would be a short-duration adjustment to bring prices to the correct level, and thereafter electricity prices increases would follow inflation. But the adjustment did not develop in line with expectations, and price increases much higher than inflation are expected for many years to come… (more)


This question raises eyebrows in whatever community it is asked. Why should we be so shocked when we all ask for the same information many times a day? We have all been caught out by shirt sizes (small, medium, large etc.) and have found that there is no standard… (more)

Internet penetration in Africa is rapidly increasing, something that the African community has strived for for some time. This increase in accessibility can be traced back to two distinct facts… (more)

“The space industry is big business.” With these words the minister of science and technology, Naledi Pandor, launched the South African National Space Agency (SANSA) and the country’s space strategy in December 2010… (more)

Imagine Africa, connected. The African Broadband Forum encourages the penetration of broadband into Africa and aims to lead the rapid deployment of 4G technology systems based on open standards encompassing all core architectures… (more)

To reach someone on the internet one has to use an address – a name or a number. That address has to be unique so users can be identified. An international organisation, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), coordinates these unique identifiers across the world… (more)

There is general agreement that the hype is something of the past, cloud computing is a reality and is being widely implemented by SMMEs, enterprises and large corporates alike. I had the opportunity to speak with some of the experts in the field… (more)

South Africa will adopt the DVB-T2 digital television standard, and the country’s migration from analogue to digital TV broadcasting should be completed by December 2013. This was the verdict reached by cabinet in December but only announced by communications minister Roy Padayachie on 10 January 2011… (more)

Undoubtedly the debate will continue as vendors and telcos defend their positions. While arguments about which is the best technology continue, operators who have selected WiMAX, a ready-to-implement technology, are benefiting greatly… (more)

The author sets out the four biggest questions that the UK’s manufacturing and logistics businesses are focusing on answering as the industry begins to turn its attention to the cost and efficiency benefits of cloud computing… (more)

Despite all the technological advantages in the communications environment, the quality of voice communication has not improved much from the days of the carbon microphone. In fact, with the introduction of cellular services the quality of voice has deteriorated, mainly because of reduced bandwidth and poor quality codecs… (more)

What is enterprise manufacturing intelligence (EMI) really and do you need a manufacturing execution system (MES) or manufacturing operations management (MOM) system to make it work? Can the one exist without the other and which is the chicken and which the egg?… (more)

Plantwide optimisation – one of a host of different goals in industry – is becoming increasingly important for many organisations. Through initiatives such as energy saving, operational excellence, cost reduction and regulatory compliance, companies are beginning to see the convergence of these becoming a reality… (more)

Maintaining sound ergonomics is essential as workplace designs which take into account human factor principles are less likely to lead to errors and accidents and more likely to improve operator efficiency and well-being… (more)

If you are going to be a high-volume manufacturer, you need to know the cost of testing and you need to calculate the cost of test mathematically for each one of your products,” says Larry Des Jardin, GM, Modular Product Operation at Agilent Technologies in an interview with Jessy Cavazos of Frost and Sullivan… (more)

The safety requirements specification, is one of the most important safety instrumented system documents produced in the conceptual phase. A poorly developed SRS can contribute to over 40% of safety system design failures, according to the UK HSE. Both IEC 61508 and 61511 functional safety standards provide guidelines on the minimum information that an SRS must contain, and this article will highlight these requirements, together with a format example… (more)

Atomic clocks have enabled a world where ultra-precise timekeeping is mandatory for communications, navigation, signal processing and many other applications critical to a modern functioning society… (more)

• Consumers reap major benefits from price competition
• IFC invests in building mobile phone towers
• Angola’s Unitel SA extends mobile signal
• Eritrea’s Eri-Tel expanding network
• Kenya’s Safaricom to spend US$125-million on network upgrade
• Nigerian IXP facility to generate US$2-million in savings
• Rwanda completes fibre-optic cable rollout
• Tanzania trails in access to internet services
• Zimbabwe government publishes dubious statistics for tele-density growth… (more)

Two books came across my desk recently: Power Line Communications published by Wiley and Essentials of Modern Spectrum Management published by Cambridge Wireless Essentials… (more)

We bring you the latest:

  • India the biggest source of spam
  • Didata and IS to collaborate on video communication
  • Ecomagination approval earned
  • Aussie floods bring communications to the forefront
  • Scammers turning away from Windows platform
  • LED TVs use more eco-friendly technologies
  • Internet shutdown in Egypt – implications for telecoms industry
  • The last IPv4 internet address blocks issued… (more)

The Southern Africa Amateur Radio Satellite Association has launched an innovative satellite project and invites the participation of South African universities and universities of technology in the development and construction of a completely South African amateur radio experimental satellite… (more)

  • Two-way calling with Gigaset
  • iBattery case for iPhone
  • Monaural headset with noise-cancelling microphone
  • Watch TV on your PC or mobile phone
  • Make your Powerpoint presentations matter… (more)

This question raises eyebrows in whatever community it is asked. Why should we be so shocked when we all ask for the same information many times a day? We have all been caught out by shirt sizes (small, medium, large etc.) and have found that there is no standard… (more)

“The space industry is big business.” With these words the minister of science and technology, Naledi Pandor, launched the South African National Space Agency (SANSA) and the country’s space strategy… (more)

A satellite that missed its “birth date”
Are TGFs dangerous?
What lurks behind thunder clouds?
More data capacity
Grid power to the Meerkat site
NASA research team reveals that the moon has earth-like core
SKA precursor to Meerkat on stream

The Department of Computer Sciences at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth is well-known for its work in the field of usability studies. Currently one of its students, Patrick Tchankue Sielinou, is working on a project to design and evaluate an adaptive multimodal in-car communication system… (more)

The market of electrical installation in residential building is very price sensitive. If you cannot differentiate your offers and services from your competition, you could struggle to survive… (more)

An alternative energy provider is implementing an expansive solar energy project for Villiera Wines in Stellenbosch. This is possibly largest roof-mounted solar project in South Africa to date… (more)

A wide range of different relay modules is used in almost all industrial areas. Generally, the components are used to switch digital signals in a control cabinet… (more)

Global process industry losses are estimated at around $20-billion annually, corresponding to 5% of total production. Four-fifths of these losses are preventable and 40% thereof are primarily due to operator errors… (more)

Intimate knowledge of induction motors and the application of technology places an expert repairer in the enviable position of being able to assess whether motors are beyond economical repair or not… (more)

Reduced cost and reduced size are both important factors in drive selection processes, but functionality must not be sacrificed…  (more)

Rapid advances in light emitting diode (LED) lighting technology are making LED lighting an increasingly viable solution for those conscious of the need to save energy. … (more)

Shaun Bouchier of Eurolux answers questions on effective and attractive ways to light up a garden… (more)

Osram’s Ledvance downlights have a product life time of up to 50 000 hours. They have an efficiency of over 50 lm/W and are suited for installations in furniture and ceilings, offering a genuine alternative to conventional downlights… (more)

Special lighting solutions have been used at the stadium in Poznañ, the first completed football arena in Poland to host the teams participating in the 2012 European championships… (more)

Thank you for the article you wrote about City Power in Vector. I have no doubt that you will be inundated with more similar examples than you can read… (more)

I have a three-phase supply and one afternoon one phase dipped and it was obvious that the thieves were after the neutral, a common problem I am told… (more)

Is battery technology advancing sufficiently to power other, evolving technologies, or is sluggish development hampering progress? We put these questions to Tom Cross, managing director of First National Battery Industrial… (more)

Well known and liked in South African electrical circles, Al Fortmann passed away in Perth, West Australia, on 28 January 2011 from prostate cancer… (more)

This association was built by people with a goal to simply create a supportive home for the electrical contractor. The simplicity of this goal understates the effort required to achieve it… (more)

The Daily EE News organises information shared by EE Publishers on Twitter into an easy-to-read newspaper-style format, and provides a daily round-up of local and international news in the energy, power, electronics, ICT and geographic information science sectors… (more)

Electrical contractors must register annually. If they do not, they will be operating outside the law. This is an important message that must be understood by all contractors… (more)

A phrase used at a recent workshop in support of energy savings was “The cheapest kWh is the one you don’t use”. With the warning of energy shortfalls, and the call from Eskom to use whatever additional sources of own and standby generation that can be activated to lessen the possibility of power cuts, the appropriate slogan for 2011 may be “The most expensive kWh is the one you don’t have”… (more)

Eskom has outlined South Africa’s power system status constraints over the next two to five years, the measures it is taking to ensure a secure electricity supply and the steps consumers should take to help contain demand over this difficult period. The margin between electricity supply and demand is going to be very slim at times over the next five years, and especially over the next two years until the first units of the giant new Medupi power station come on line in late 2012 and 2013 as communicated earlier by Eskom. The first unit of the sister Kusile power station will start generating power in late 2014… (more)

Siemens Energy has successfully completed the first test phase with its CO2 capture process in a pilot facility at the Staudinger power plant operated by E.ON. The process sets new benchmarks in CO2 capture in fossil-fueled power plants. Process efficiency, the long-term chemical stability of the scrubbing agent and emissions were investigated in the pilot facility under real power plant conditions. After over 3000 operating hours since commissioning of the facility in September 2009, it has been demonstrated that the postcombustion capture process developed by Siemens can achieve a CO2 capture efficiency of over 90% with practically zero solvent emissions… (more)

This is a summary of the discussion which took place during the 2010 open session of the Cigré Group B2, Overhead Lines. The session dealt with three specific preferential subjects. Twenty seven papers were published with almost 60 prepared discussions showing a high interest in the preferential subjects… (more)

“Barehand” and “hotstick” energised techniques, coupled with patented robotic arm technology, eliminate power supply interruptions during overhead transmission and distribution line maintenance works  negating the cost of right of way acquisition, line switching, grounding and outage scheduling. Until recently only employed in the USA, these techniques have now arrived on local shores… (more)

As installed infrastructure is operated beyond its design life, maintenance budgets are downsized and the interval between outages is ever increasing, electrical failures are becoming more prevalent in the global context.  Electrical failures most often result in an electrical arc flash phenomenon… (more)

2008’s load shedding crisis caused many South African consumers to rush out to purchase generators, and importers could not keep up with the demand. But did consumers consider the implications of their expensive generator investments?  If you thought your generator was the solution, think again. If you have a 10 kW generator and you use it to power a few lights and the television, you are only using 4 kW. 6 kW is being wasted. This is costly and wasteful… (more)

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