5 years ago

Northern Cape Business 2017-18 edition

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Northern Cape Business 2017/18 is the seventh edition of this highly successful publication that has, since its launch in 2009, established itself as the premier business and investment guide to the Northern Cape Province. Officially supported and utilised by the Northern Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism, Northern Cape Business is unique as a business and investment guide that focuses exclusively on the Northern Cape.


SPECIAL FEATURE Bloodhound land speed record Jet and rocket powered vehicle set to top 1600km/h on Northern Cape runway. Tourism is playing an increasingly important role in social dynamics not only in South Africa, but the all over the world. The Bloodhound project that will be hosted in the Northern Cape is a fine example of how tourism can help to unify and uplift communities. The Bloodhound project will see RAF wing commander Andy Green steer a custom-built supersonic car in an attempt set a new world land speed record by travelling at 1 000 miles (1 600km) per hour. The supersonic car will be propelled by rocket and aircraft engines to achieve the necessary propulsion. The first test runs will take place at Hakskeenpan in the Kalahari region of the Northern Cape from September 2018. Supported by the Northern Cape provincial government since 2010, the Bloodhound project has created employment for members of the small villages in the Mier district and brought technological advances and infrastructural improvements that would otherwise have been unobtainable. The project has contributed significantly to job creation in the area with over 300 members of the local community being contracted to assist with track clearance. Since November 2010 over 15 800 tons of stones have been removed from the track and safety zones. The nearby communities have also benefited from a fresh water pipeline and a sophisticated communication network. Local mobile service provider MTN has signed on as official telecommunication partner and has invested over R30-million in infrastructure at the pan. It has installed long-term evolution (LTE) technology to transmit video, audio and data from the car and provided 3G connectivity in the area. The Bloodhound project has also been pivotal in the marketing efforts of the province by drawing global attention to a very remote part of South Africa’s largest province. The province has been promoting itself as a premier destination for extreme sports and outdoor adventure and this high-octane adventure has highlighted this positioning. It has also showcased the tourism potential and diversity of experiences to be enjoyed in the Hakskeenpan area. During the build-up to the first run, the pan has attracted thousands of visitors which has made a positive contribution to alleviate unemployment and has also delivered a significant financial impact in local communities. Since 2010, the pan has hosted several motoring events and even the World Tourism Day celebrations. Each of these events created further opportunities for community development and participation as event managers engage locals as service providers. This has contributed to giving the local community a sense of pride and ownership in the project. The pan lies in the heart of the Kalahari Red Dune Route and visitors have been encouraged to explore the fascinating offerings of this diverse region, which offers something for any type of traveller whether looking for luxury, adventure, culture or family fun. Children are being empowering and inspired by the science and technology represented by the Bloodhound project. All data generated, including research and design, and from the manufacturing and testing stages, are available to schools registered with the Bloodhound education department. Visit the Northern Cape Tourism Authority at: NORTHERN CAPE BUSINESS 2017/18 20

Listening to the universe... in the Karoo The world’s largest and most powerful radio telescope the world has ever seen is under construction. The Square Kilometre Array South Africa mega-project under way in the Karoo is a transformative scientific scheme with wide-ranging implications. The latest spinoff from the multinational radio astronomy project is the introduction to South Africa of study modules in big data. A collaboration between SKA SA and the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) offers courses in the fundamentals of big data research. The funding partner for the study programme is the Newton Fund through Development in Africa with Radio Astronomy (DARA). The Newton Fund is supported by the UK government. The SKA will be the world’s largest radio telescope, made up of thousands of antennae throughout Australia and Africa, centred on the area around Carnarvon in the Northern Cape. SKA will be tackling really big questions: What is dark matter? When did life begin? How are galaxies created? South Africa’s own 64-dish MeerKAT telescope, which will form part of the SKA, started coming on line in 2016. Once all 64 dishes are operational, a cellular phone signal from Saturn will be within the scope of this amazing set of instruments. South Africa is one of only three countries to have passed legislation to create an Astronomy Reserve and this helped persuade the international decision-makers that South Africa should be the host (with Australia) of the SKA. There are 17 countries on the project, with the headquarters in Manchester, England. In Africa, a total of eight countries will host SKA antennae, including Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia and Zambia. The town of Sutherland, 245km south-west of the site of SKA, already hosts an array of telescopes that have a long history of providing scientists with excellent data in clear skies above the flat and dry Karoo. Sectors in the Northern Cape to benefit include tourism and hospitality. A number of local firms have become involved through the provision of at least 75% of the components. To ensure that local contractors have access to some of the work, the Kareeberg and Karoohoogland Contractors’ Forum was established. Ten local contractors are receiving training in how to prepare to tender for projects, with a particular focus on the 80km road that links the town of Carnarvon to the SKA site. Three South African universities (University of Cape Town, University of the Western Cape and North West University) are cooperating to operate the Inter-University Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy. 21 NORTHERN CAPE BUSINESS 2017/18

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