Three academics from the University of Johannesburg (UJ) have been announced as finalists in the national 2016/2017 NSTF-South32 Awards, the premier research awards in South Africa. They are Prof Nic Beukes from the Department of Geology within the Faculty of Science, and Prof Saurabh Sinha and Prof Charles Mbohwa from the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment.
Prof Nic Beukes, a research professor in the Department of Geology, is a finalist for the 2016/2017 NSTF-South32 Lifetime Award, for achievements by an individual over a period of 15 years or more.
Prof Beukes is a field geologist, specializing in sedimentology and stratigraphy, with emphasis on understanding the origin of iron and manganese ore deposits and the nature of surface environments on early earth, which includes the history of atmospheric oxygen and climatic change in the middle Archean to early Paleoproterozoic.
He received the Draper Memorial Award of the Geological Society of South Africa in 2002 for his outstanding contributions in the field of geology in the country.
Prof Beukes is the Director of the Department of Science and Technology’s (DST) National Research Foundation (NRF) Centre of Excellence (CoE) for Integrated Mineral and Energy Resource Analysis (DST-NRF CIMERA), hosted by the Department of Geology, University of Johannesburg, and co-hosted by the University of the Witwatersrand.
DST-NRF CIMERA is one of the prestigious CoEs funded by the NRF to focus research excellence across all disciplines on long term projects in South Africa and abroad.
TW Kambule Award finalist
Prof Charles Mbohwa is a finalist for the TW Kambule-NSTF Award for research and its outputs, by an individual over a period of up to 15 years after award of a PhD.
Prof Mbohwa currently serves as the Vice-Dean, Post Graduate Studies, Research and Innovation, at the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment (FEBE). He is a full professor in the Department of Quality and Operations Management within FEBE.
He is also a finalist in the category Research or Engineering Capacity Development Awards for achievements over the last five to 10 years.
As an established researcher in the field of sustainability engineering and energy, Prof Mbohwa’s specialisations include sustainable engineering, energy systems, Life-Cycle Assessments (LCA’s) and bio-energy/fuel feasibility and sustainability with general research interests in renewable energies and sustainability issues.
LCA’s quantify the environmental impacts associated with all stages of a product’s life from raw material extraction through materials processing, manufacture, distribution, use, repair and maintenance, and disposal or recycling.
In 2016, Prof Mbohwa received a Distinguished Educator Award from the global Industrial Engineering and Operations Management Society (IEOM).
Both Prof Saurabh Sinha and Charles Mbohwa have contributed to the UJ top-10, in 2016, in terms of research output units (ROUs).
Management award finalist
Prof Saurabh Sinha is a finalist for the Management and related activities award, by an individual over the last 5-10 years. Prof Sinha serves as the Executive Dean, Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment.
The global professional association, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) elected Professor Saurabh Sinha as Educational Activities Vice-President for its 2014 leadership. He was re-elected to serve a second and final term.
In 2015, Prof Sinha was inducted as a Fellow of the South African Academy of Engineering (SAAE).
Currently, Prof Sinha serves as IEEE Educational Activities Board Member (as Chair of the IEEE Educational Activities Board Nominations and Appointments Committee and also as former Vice-President of IEEE: Educational Activities).
He is the co-founder of the IEEE Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS-in-IEEE) programme, with Prof Kapil Dandekar from Drexel University, PA, USA, which works with several South African universities.
Both Prof Saurabh Sinha and Charles Mbohwa have contributed to the UJ top-10, in 2016, in terms of research output units (ROUs). During the period of 2013-2016, FEBE’s ROUs more than doubled to approximately 360 ROUs in 2016.
Prof Sinha, a previous TW Kambule NRF-NSTF award recipient, actively conducts research in the area of mm Wave integrated circuit (IC) design.
About the NSTF
The National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF) is the largest multi-stakeholder forum for science, engineering, technology (SET) and innovation organisations in South Africa. NSTF is a non-profit company that promotes SET and innovation and engages with related government policy issues.