At the ninth annual conference of the Manufacturing Enterprise Solutions Association (MESA) held recently at the Black Eagle conference centre, the theme was manufacturing solutions for the digital revolution: Big MOM, big data, big results. Once again the conference hosted an array of top drawer speakers and delegates who were able to enjoy great networking opportunities as well as keeping up with the latest developments in the field. They were presented with a wide mix of new technologies and new ideas and their practical application in interesting case studies in top companies such as Lonmin, Namibia Breweries, Aerosud and Hulamin. Some examples were the use of digital twinning for proof of concept in an Aerosud project and the deployment of mobile apps and machine learning models to generate an extra R195 000 per annum in revenue on a Lonmin concentrator plant. Sponsors included Esteq, Bytes Technology, Wonderware, Schneider Electric, AM2 Systems, GE, j5 International, GE, iWorx, MES, SAIMC, AdaptIT, OSIsoft and Pimsoft.
From left: Dr Adriana Marais, head of innovation, SAP Africa and adventurer extraordinaire; Kim Roberts, editor, Technews; Daniel Spies, chairman MESA Africa; Hanli Nel, process engineer, DRA; AJ Pelser, head of group MES, Sasol.
The highlight of the conference was the presentation by quantum biology researcher, Dr Adriana Marais, who is on the shortlist to go to Mars on the Mars One project – the adventure of the century. She believes that exploration drives innovation and she had the audience spellbound with her vision of life on Mars and the potential for this project to generate new technologies which could benefit people on earth.
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