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Electronics Buyers' Guide

Electronics Manufacturing & Production Handbook 2017


From the editor's desk: More of the same, but hopefully better
31 January 2017, News

I don’t often say this at the start of a new year, but if 2017 carries on more or less where 2016 left off, it wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing. Last year wasn’t perfect for the local electronics sector by any means, but there were signs of renewed optimism both in the official news being put out and also in the tones of private conversations being had.

In this first issue of 2017, we get off on the right foot with exciting news from across the electronic engineering spectrum. Firstly, our students are doing us proud by participating once again at the International Supercomputing Conference in Germany. Chosen from the Universities of the Western Cape and Stellenbosch, six students will compete in the International Student Cluster Competition, an event which South Africa has won three out of the four times of trying.

On the research front, too, we are making waves at the cutting edge, with Wits (University of the Witwatersrand) researchers having made a breakthrough in quantum electronics that could significantly further the development of carbon-based high-frequency devices.

At the level of industry, we are not far from seeing the wide-scale deployment of the Sigfox network in South Africa. Sigfox has already been deployed in 25 other countries, and is designed specifically for the Internet of Things (IoT) market, which is projected to be worth more than $2 billion locally by 2020. Unsurprisingly, the rollout will focus on the major metropolitan areas of Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and Durban initially, but full national coverage is planned for 2018. Sticking with wireless communications, local company Poynting Antennas has scored an overseas design win, its antennas having been designed into a network of high-tech weather stations across Norway to assist the country’s air ambulance services.

It appears that major changes are on the horizon for Altron, with the news that the technology group has secured major funding, but may be one step closer to having its management wrested from the control of the Venter family. With all due respect to Dr Bill Venter and what his company has contributed to the South African technology sector over decades, it is probably about time the beleaguered company has a shake-up and look to rebuild under new management.

Whether for good or bad, manufacturing will continue to be a key topic in the local electronics sector. On this front, we have produced our third annual Electronics Manufacturing & Production (EMP) Handbook, which you will have received a copy of together with this, the year’s first issue of Dataweek.

On behalf of the whole Dataweek team, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all our readers the very best for a memorable and productive 2017.

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Further reading:

  • Electronics news digest
    19 July 2017, News
    South Africa • Weighing just 2,5 kg, South Africa’s first privately owned nanosatellite, nSight1, has been successfully launched into orbit from the International Space Station (ISS). Deployed on 24 ...
  • From the chairman’s desk: Manufacturing in South Africa
    19 July 2017, AREI, This Week's Editor's Pick, News
    Warren Muir reflects on his attendance at the 2017 Manufacturing Indaba, and how it fits in with arei’s plans for the South African electronics industry.
  • SA antennas used in major European tunnel project
    19 July 2017, Poynting Antennas, News
    The Gotthard Base Tunnel, the world’s longest and deepest train tunnel through the Swiss Alps, makes exclusive use of technology from Poynting Antennas to ensure a seamless digital communication service underground over a route length of more than 57 km.
  • Training structure the key to successful content
    19 July 2017, News
    The structure and assessment of training programmes are just as important as their content when it comes to up-skilling production staff, explains Bob Willis.
  • Altron appoints executive committee members
    19 July 2017, News
    Altron announced the appointment of Collin Govender and Zipporah Maubane as group executive: shared services, and group executive: marketing, PR and corporate communications, respectively. The company ...
  • Robots race it out in Tshwane
    19 July 2017, RS Components (SA), News
    The fifth annual EECE Race Day was held at the University of Pretoria this year, giving third-year microcontroller students at the department of electrical, electronic and computer engineering the opportunity ...
  • Microchip development board up for grabs
    19 July 2017, News
    Win a Microchip PIC32MK1024GPE development board for motor control and general purpose applications.    Dataweek readers are offered the chance to win a Microchip PIC32MK1024GPE development board (DM320106), ...
  • From the editor's desk: Is SA ready to adopt the ITA?
    19 July 2017, Technews Publishing, News
    2017 marks the 21st anniversary of the Information Technology Agreement (ITA), an initiative of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to eliminate trade tariffs on hundreds of high-tech products. The acronym ...
  • Electrocomp holds successful technical seminars
    19 July 2017, Electrocomp, News
    The Electrocomp Group once again held its ‘SA Best’ technical training seminar series on 16 May at Gallagher Convention Centre in Johannesburg; 17 May at Sica’s Guest House in Durban; and 18 May at Stellenbosch ...
  • Celebrating 20 years of disruptive electronics
    19 July 2017, EDA Technologies, News
    We use the term ‘disruptive technologies’ loosely these days, but actually disruptive technologies have been around forever, most notably since the invention of gun powder, motorised vehicles and, ...
  • Electronics news digest
    14 June 2017, News
    South Africa • Altron announced its annual results for the year ended 28 February 2017, with revenue declining by 26% to R19,7 billion and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation ...
  • Cape Town hosts Dynamic Spectrum Alliance global summit
    14 June 2017, This Week's Editor's Pick, News
    The three-day event brought together representatives from five continents and 21 countries around the world, including policy makers, regulators, academia, and public and private sector representatives.

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