Robotics Association of South Africa (Robotics SA):

Robotics SA was registered in September 2009 as a Section 21 (not for profit) company with the purpose of furthering the objectives of Robotics, Automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) in South Africa.

Robotics SA aim to be a unifying ‘vehicle’ for collective cooperation among the various Robotics and Mechatronics research
and development initiatives across Southern Africa with the following objectives to guide the association.

MAIN OBJECTIVES (taken from Robotics SA’s website)
•    To galvanise and coordinate the efforts of the various Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) development and research initiatives across Southern Africa.

•    Promote awareness of the Robotics and AI research initiatives taking place at the primary and tertiary education institutions in the region.

•    Participating in and hosting International Robotics events such as RoboCup or FIRST Lego League championships in South Africa.

•    Building a stronger network among the Robotics and AI research and interest group community in Southern Africa and Internationally.

•    Attracting stronger Industry and Government support and participation in the encouragement and development of higher level engineering skills in Southern Africa.

•    Recognition for the efforts of or local Robotics and AI research teams and practitioners.

At this stage membership is open to anyone involved or interested in Robotics or its supporting sciences.  There are currently no fees required and more information can be obtained from the founders:  Andre Hoffman and Mike Barker.

More about Founders:

Andre Hoffmann  @vinexa

Mr Hoffman is a Fellow of the South African Institute of Electrical Engineers (SAIEE), he is registered with the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) as a professional technologist (Engineering).

André has 30 years of engineering experience in the ICT industry qualifying with a National Higher Diploma in Electrical Engineering and Telecommunications in 1984 and then going on to graduate with an MBA (cum laude) from the University of Natal in 2003. He focused this degree on Information Systems and Technology as a good supplement to his engineering qualification and experience.

André is currently the Chief Engineer of Transmission Engineering at Broadband Infraco and has participated in and organised a number of conferences through the SAIEE and other organisations.

Mike Barker  @mike_barker

Mr Barker is a Consulting Electrical Engineer and member of – SAIEE, IEEE, International Building Performance Simulation Association (IBPSA), NFPA, ASA, ASIS, ISA.

He was involved as part of a SAIEE Young Members committee that organised a number of conferences in the mid-90s in Durban, including an Engineering Lifeskills Conference.

He worked as a Consulting Electronics Engineer on various convention centres and green buildings.

These guys organised a Robotics Expo a few years ago before the economy was so tight.  Activity in this field seems to be picking up again and there is a lot of excitement in the circles of robotics in South Africa.  

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