SAIMC


SAIMC: From the office of the CEO: The changing world

May 2022 SAIMC

One can barely write a column without touching on the drastic events and changes that beset the world these days. The war in Ukraine demonstrates this perfectly: tanks, armoured personnel carriers and other armoured vehicles have long served as clear displays of strength for any army.


Johan Maartens.

Then, a Turkish Master’s graduate from the University of Pennsylvania and MIT answers his country’s call for crewless aerial weapons, after an embargo imposed by the USA, and changes everything. Autonomous cars are one thing; crewless aerial assault vehicles are quite another. One individual by the name of Selçuk Bayraktar started a trend that disrupted the status quo. His Bayraktar TB2 drone is changing the face of the battlefield, based on a design and construction that allow it to be loaded with 95 kg of weaponry.

The Bayraktar drone is one example of how new technologies are changing the world – and a Master’s degree is not a requirement. We must focus on the development of entrepreneurs as part of the curricula of academic institutions. We cannot afford to have separate entrepreneurial centres that are not integrated into the typical curriculum.

On 4 May 2022, during a meeting of the MESA Africa executive committee, a lengthy and open discussion took place on the possible integration of MESA Africa into the SAIMC. The Automation Federation and more than 130 countries worked on an Automation Competency Model that includes integration with enterprise manufacturing execution systems (MES) and manufacturing operations management (MOM).

After the meeting, a vote took place in which nine people voted for the integration of MESA Africa into the SAIMC, three against and one abstained. MESA Africa will retain its name as a group within the SAIMC and will continue to be responsible for all MES/MOM activities, but now with the added advantages that a body like the SAIMC can bring.

While many items are still open for discussion before the final transition takes place, I would like to use this opportunity to welcome MESA Africa into the SAIMC fold. MESA Africa brings skills and programmes that will assist the SAIMC in building on its successes to the benefit of our industry.

To those individuals doing the work described in the ‘Identification of Engineering Work’ regulations, please note: If your surname starts between A and K and you have not yet rendered your registration documents to ECSA, I suggest you start with that immediately or start looking for a person who can sign off your work from 1 January 2025.

Yours in Automation,

Johan Maartens


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