The energy sector has proven to be an economic game changer globally and for South Africa, energy is the catalyst to revolutionise our economy and drive economic transformation. However, the current global energy situation is faced with many uncertainties. These include the complex environmental and climate change issues, in which energy is a major player.
Business Unit Purpose
To support the development of an innovative, competitive and sustainable energy industry that supports South Africa’s transition to a low carbon economy, contributing to the energy security of supply and the creation of emerging industries. The Energy Unit will contribute towards resolving the energy challenge by focussing on the areas that have the potential to create jobs and stimulate economic growth.
To support technology innovations that contributes towards:
- a) Strengthening security of supply; and
- b) Supporting the Government’s efforts of transition to a low carbon economy through proliferation of clean energy and climate change adaptation and mitigation technologies.
Technology Focus Areas
- Bioenergy technologies
- Renewable energy technologies
- Energy Management technologies
- Combined Heat and Power (CHP) technologies
- Clean coal technologies
- Oil and gas
These technologies have the potential to contribute to reducing unemployment which will consequently assist in addressing poverty and inequality in the country while simultaneously addressing the challenge of inclusive economic development.
Tel: 012 472 2701
InnoVenton (Institute for Chemical Technology), based at the Nelson Mandela University, has received funding to investigate the possibility of generating biofuels, using a colony of micro-algae strands and cyano-bacteria as feedstock. Mainly intended to produce biofuels as a blend with existing transport fuels. NMMU then discovered the benefits of coal-algae agglomerates, a blend of micro-algae with coal fines to produce a cleaner coal which incorporates a biomass component. The agglomerated material can be used to generate electricity or produce transport fuels. The project promotes the use of environment-friendly transport fuels and addresses the environmental pollution problem associated with high mineral particles in the atmosphere.