Engineering and Science Research Showcase, great success in Sandton

Academics and industry professionals joined forces at the annual Stellenbosch University (SU) Engineering and Science Showcase, held at the Hilton Hotel in Sandton on Friday, 10 June.

“Stellenbosch University appreciates the opportunity to present the research activities to our colleagues in the industry,” said Prof Wikus van Niekerk, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, about the successful event.

The engineering and science industries of South Africa were well represented, with more than 100 people attending the event. This year’s Showcase welcomed attendees from various organisations and entities, such as ESKOM, Wesgro, the Mandela Mining Precinct and the Trans-Caledon Tunnel Authority, to name but a few. Delegates from the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany were also present to discuss the work and research they do with the Fraunhofer Innovation Platform for the Water-Energy-Food Nexus at SU.

“It was heart-warming that so many busy people took the time from their busy schedules to spend the day with us,” added Prof Van Niekerk.

The Showcase offered seven sessions with 40 academics presenting work and research from their departments over the course of the day. Professors Wikus van Niekerk and Louise Warnich, Dean of the Science Faculty, welcomed attendees and provided an overview of the Faculties before the day’s activities commenced. The different sessions included: The 4th Industrial Revolution, Technology and the World, Biological Advances, IoT and Logistics, Manufacturing and Materials, The future of Energy, and Computational Methods. Presentations displayed cutting-edge research, such as Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence at SU, by Professors Herman Kamper and Willie Brink, as well as Autonomous Vehicles and Robotics Research at SU, presented by Dr Japie Engelbrecht. Other exciting research fields on display included Machine Learning: Helping Africa listen to herself, presented by Dr Emmanuel Dufourq, and Biomedical Engineering Innovations for Africa, presented by Prof Kristiaan Schreve.

During session breaks, attendees were invited to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea and light snacks while mingling with academic staff. After lunch, there was also an opportunity to learn more about the university’s different engineering and science departments from an exhibition of informational posters. There were 29 science posters and 24 engineering posters in total. The information-filled day ended on a high note, with guests enjoying a cocktail and alumni function.

“We look forward to ongoing conversations on how Stellenbosch University can continue to support the development of the South African economy in collaboration with our industry partners,” concluded Prof Van Niekerk.

Click here for a complete list of research presented at the SU Engineering and Science Showcase, as well as the contact details for each researcher.

Photographs: Attendees learning more about the research undertaken by SU’s Engineering and Science Faculties at the Showcase poster event.

Photocredit: Ms Paula-Ann Smit