Revolutionise mining safety through AI and Robotics

Dr Callen Fisher Appointed Enaex Africa Research Chair in Mining Robotics: Enaex Africa Partners with Stellenbosch University to Revolutionize Mining Safety with AI and Robotics Earlier This Year

Earlier this year, Enaex Africa and Stellenbosch University (SU) formed a partnership to fast track AI and robotics in Africa whilst developing local skills and expertise in these fields.

This partnership aims to enhance the safety of individuals currently engaged in deep underground mining while creating new educational opportunities to upskill students. With the establishment of this relationship, Enaex Africa has agreed to fund a research chair for the development of AI and robotics in mining at Stellenbosch University for the next three years.

By integrating AI and robotics technologies, Enaex Africa’s core value to humanize traditional mining methods will be initiated by introducing autonomous robotic systems for deep underground mining. This removes the need for people to work underground and will create new jobs within the mining process due to these new autonomous systems.

The collaboration with the robotics department of Stellenbosch University positions this collaboration at the forefront of impactful research and development, emphasizing safety, sustainability and efficiency as their mutual and primary goals.

The CEO of Enaex Africa, Francisco Baudrand explained, “In our pursuit of transforming the mining industry into a safer, more efficient, and technologically advanced sector, our collaboration with Stellenbosch University represents a pivotal step forward for the mining industry.”

“We are moving into autonomous processes and Artificial Intelligence, incorporating AI into our processes to reduce costs, to grow safety and efficiency and to optimize energy.” He stated.

Dr Callen Fisher, now the Enaex Africa Research Chair in Mining Robotics and Senior Lecturer at the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the Faculty of Engineering, SU, highlighted the crucial aspect of student upskilling within this initiative.

“The key to this initiative is the upskilling of students capable of developing robotics and AI systems. They are at the forefront of developing innovative solutions for the mining industry,” he stated.

As part of the collaboration, Stellenbosch University aims to nurture the next generation of talent, encouraging a growth in innovation and sustainability for robotics within mining practices.

“By nurturing the next generation of talent, Stellenbosch University aims to instill a culture of innovation and sustainability in robotics for mining practices,” Dr Fisher concluded.

This strategic partnership marks a significant step towards revolutionizing the mining industry, combining industry expertise with academic knowledge to address safety challenges and drive sustainable innovation.

The collaboration between Enaex Africa and Stellenbosch University shows a commitment to evolving technology for the advancement of mining practices, ensuring a safer and more efficient future for the industry.

Photograph: (from left to right) Johan Fourie, Francisco Baudrand, Dr Callen Fisher and Ruben Olivier.


For inquiries, please contact:

Dr Callen Fisher: Enaex Africa Research Chair in Mining Robotics
Cell nr: +27 83 6626669
Cnr Banghoek & Joubert Streett, Stellenbosch, 7600

Johan Fourie: Technology, Innovation & Market Development Director
Cell nr: +27 82 455 5234
199 Oxford Road, 2nd floor, Oxford Parks, Dunkeld, Johannesburg, 2196

Ruben Olivier: Manager: Innovation, Robotics and CBS
Cell nr: +27 82 498 5495
199 Oxford Road, 2nd floor, Oxford Parks, Dunkeld, Johannesburg, 2196