The African Energy Leadership Centre (AELC) at Wits Business School recently hosted a delegation from the University of Namibia (UNAM) to discuss ways in which the parties can collaborate on future research, technology and commercialisation, specifically with regards to green hydrogen.
The AELC, established in 2017 by Wits University and WBS, is the first of its kind in Africa to offer postgraduate programmes in energy leadership. The Centre’s other major area of focus are research, and networking/collaboration with industry practitioners and other research institutions to advance a successful continent-wide transition to 4IR in the sector and a lower carbon environment.
“The AELC was formed to address the scarce skills crisis in the industry, but also to collaborate with partners in academia, government and industry to ensure that we effectively manage Africa’s energy technology and lower-carbon transition,” says Prof Lwazi Ngubevana, Director of the AELC.
“We were very excited to meet our counterparts in Namibia who are making great strides in research in all aspects of renewable energy and I believe that there is a lot of scope for future collaboration both with WBS and the broader Wits community.”
The Namibian delegation comprised a number of researchers from the Department of Physics, Chemistry and Material Science, Multidisciplinary Research, as well as the International Relations Office at UNAM, led by Pro-Vice Chancellor of Research, Innovation and Development at UNAM and Chairperson of the Namibian 4IR Presidential Task Force, Prof. Anicia Peters. Dr Zivayi Chiguvare, Senior Lecturer, gave a presentation on the Namibian Green Hydrogen Research Institute (NGHRI), a national institute hosted at UNAM to promote research, development and innovation on hydrogen production and valorisation.
“Hydrogen technology is now taking centre stage and we are exploring ways in which we can collaborate with Wits University through training, student exchange, joint research projects, pilot plants, and the like. With our abundant natural resources and research expertise in renewable energy, there is much scope for our two institutions to work together to advance the hydrogen value chain in the entire Southern Africa and beyond,” said Prof. Peters.