Bob and Mary Scholes: from climate change to transformative change

Bob and Mary Scholes had – almost by accident, they say – given themselves just the right grounding to play an important part in growing our understanding of what humans are doing to the planet – especially in terms of climate change. This article by Mandi Smallhorne is made possible through funding from the Royal Society of South Africa.

South African ship and robots to uncover the future of climate change in Africa

An adventurous team of South African scientists is preparing for a journey to an ocean at the bottom of the Earth. Their expedition will delve deeper into how the climate will change in Africa, and how South Africa can better protect its food supplies. In July 2019, researchers led by Dr Pedro Monteiro at the…

Eugene Cloete: the solution seeker

Few academics can claim being natural entrepreneurs, but Professor Eugene Cloete is one of them. His curriculum vitae features not just his publications in academic journals, but also almost a dozen patents. He considers his “best idea ever” was using an empty teabag, replacing the tea with activated carbon and using antimicrobial nanofibres for microfiltration…

[LISTEN] Young SA scientists forge networks at BRICS

The 2nd BRICS Young Scientists Forum gathered young researchers to share in their academic and policy practices. Scibraai had a chat with them in China. Take a listen. You can find more round-the-fire stories on South African science and scientists on scibraai.co.za.

The dream of electric cars

Time to rev your (electric) engine. Funeka P. Nkosi of the CSIR writes in Science Today about electric cars, and the relevant research being done in South Africa.    Twenty years ago, it looked like the dream of the electric car was dead. Even though the first practical electric car was invented in 1884, these…

[LISTEN] The Science Inside – Transport

For petrolheads and science nerds alike, this week’s show gets into all things cars following the petrol strike. Elna looks at the past and future of electric cars and drives a South African made prototype with Winstone Jordaan from Gridcars. Dr Mathetha Mokonyama from the CSIR talks to us about how public transport systems get designed.…

From Stellenbosch to Saskatchewan: microbes across the globe

by Marcelle van Niekerk   A whiteboard dominates the wall of Professor Gideon Wolfaardt’s office. Permanent markers leave trails of colourful writing, bleeding into hastily drawn sketches. In the corner there’s a drawing of what looks like a bullet. Wolfaardt himself finishes typing on his computer and pushes it away. “Sorry, I was busy with…

Better get used to this heat

When the maximum temperature approaches 36 degrees around 2pm in Jozi, I’m like, screw this, I’m done; let’s pick it up after dark. And then I thank the flying spaghetti monster I’m not in Pretoria right now. I’m lucky enough to have that kind of flexibility, and many other people are lucky enough to enjoy…

The Science Inside: What’s up with your cellphone battery?

Did you know that South African researchers at the CSIR had a hand in developing the lithium ion batteries that are used in many cellphones? Find out how these are made. And why your battery runs out so quickly.And how to treat your batter better!        

#SciBraaiLIVE & CSIR in Mafikeng for National Science Week

National Science Week kicks off at North West University on 1 August 2015. In partnership with the CSIR and its researchers, SciBraai will host another SciBraaiLIVE event – it’s a real-world braai where we share round-the-fire stories about South African science and scientists. The format of this event will be a mix of the “speed-date…