Dark energy – the next frontier?

by Thabiso Goba Dark energy has dominated the 69th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting with a few playful murmurs of a future Nobel Prize for the next discovery.  About 5% of the universe is made up of known atoms like protons, neutrons, and electrons and the rest of it is an unknown, invisible gas substance that…

Shisa Sayensi: Isayensi yeviki 14 July 2016

Isomiso sisilungiselela okuzayo, kutholakale amathambo asebhayibhelini, owesifazane omusha kwi-NASA, konke lokhu kutholakala kwi Shisa Sayensi! Isomiso sisilungiselela ukushintshashintsha kwemozulu Isomiso esesishaye amazwe aseningizimu yezwekazi le Afrika, sibonakala njengethuba lokhuthi lawamazwe akwazi ukuzilungiselela njengoba isimo semozulu siguquka umhlaba wonke. Lona umbono wabacwaningi baseNyuvesi yaseKapa abenza ucwaningo ngomonakalo odalwa isomiso emazweni ase Mozambique nase Namibia. Njengoba isimo…

Between science and society: Northern Cape communities struggle with the telescope in their backyards

“Will the SKA affect pregnancies in the area?” The question comes in Afrikaans, in a rough voice belonging to someone who has lived a much longer, harder life than this middle-aged man appears to have lived. We’re in Vanwyksvlei, in the Northern Cape. Outside the last light is draining from the timeless Hantam Karoo landscape.…

Why South Africa is finding it difficult to wean itself off coal

South Africa has made domestic and international commitments to climate change mitigation. But the country continues to depend on coal-fired power plants, which provide 92% of its electricity. A key challenge for the country in dealing with electricity shortages is that the bulk of power comes from coal, which is harmful for the environment and…

Crowdfunded community alarm system aims to make informal settlements safer

Unlike those who can afford a security system for their homes, residents in informal settlements have virtually no way of telling if their homes are being invaded. But now, a new cost-effective alarm system is looking to change that. Most township alarm systems we’ve seen lately, like Lumkani andScova, are made to combat fires in townships. Cape Town-based…

3D-inspired hi-tech buoy takes African marine monitoring to new levels

A new real-time measuring buoy can change the way the maritime industry operates, writes Dirk Muller in The Conversation Africa. ——————————————————————       A hi-tech buoy that provides real-time data can play a key role in helping South Africa manage its coastal waters. It could also be deployed beyond the country’s waters. Devised and tested virtually…

Brakke ken van brug bou

Om ‘n brug te bou uit houtstokkies en gom – en een wat daarby ‘n gewig en ‘n half kan hou – is die uitdaging waarmee hoërskoolspanne onlangs geswoeg het tydens die finale van die AECOM-SAICE Internasionale Brugboukompetisie. Die span van Hoërskool Brackenfell in die Kaap het vanjaar as wenners uit die stryd getree. Die…