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Hartmut Winkler

Hartmut Winkler

Professor of Physics, University of Johannesburg
A lifelong academic who served stints as Dean of Science and acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic at the former Vista University in South Africa and was until recently the Head of Physics at the University of Johannesburg.

Research interests range from astrophysics through to atmospheric physics, solar energy and energy supply.

A vocal commentator on South African energy issues, especially the renewables versus nuclear debate.

South Africa’s electricity crisis: what political parties say in their election manifestos about solving it

Mar 28, 2024 12:04 pm UTC| Insights & Views Politics

South Africa is in the middle of a deep electricity crisis. In 2023 the public, many of whom are voters, experienced the worst loadshedding to date, losing power for an average of five hours a day. The power shortages...

South Africa's new plan to end power cuts is seriously flawed. Here's why

Jan 09, 2024 23:03 pm UTC| Economy

South Africa experienced unprecedented electricity shortages in 2023 as ageing coal plants became increasingly prone to breakdowns. The country urgently needs to develop new electricity generation facilities and reduce...

South Africa power outages: some improvement but a long way to go before the grid is stable

Nov 01, 2023 07:12 am UTC| Economy

Over the past few months, South Africas power generation sector has performed better than expected. Four factors explain this: an acceleration of solar power installations, less frequent breakdowns at power stations, a...

South Africa's nuclear sector has failed its test: the Koeberg nuclear plant life extension

Aug 21, 2022 17:23 pm UTC| Science Economy

South Africas only nuclear power plant, Koeberg, has frequently been in the news in 2022, all for the wrong reasons. Its operating licence expires in 2024, and its continued operation thereafter depends on critical...

Global Geopolitics Series

Russia's nuclear power exports: will they stand the strain of the war in Ukraine?

Mar 07, 2022 10:13 am UTC| Politics

Russias invasion of the Ukraine has led to massive sanctions and resulted in heavy blows to its economy. It has also led to unprecedented condemnation of Russias leadership, as well as growing international...

Power shortages will remain a big challenge in a post-COVID-19 South Africa

Apr 21, 2020 12:42 pm UTC| Economy

The decline in economic activity precipitated by the spread of COVID-19 and ensuing lockdown in South Africa is also affecting the countrys electricity supply dynamics. The power outages that were disrupting the economy...

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Economy

Will government investment make green hydrogen a reality in Australia?

In the budget last week, the government was keen to talk about its efforts to turn Australia into a renewable superpower under the umbrella of the Future Made in Australia policies. Future Made is a framework that sets...

Small businesses can help South Africa fight unemployment if they get proper support – study

South Africa has an alarming unemployment rate of approximately 32.1%. Solutions have been elusive. The unemployment rate has been consistently high for decades. Our research has revolved around entrepreneurship. We...

Australia is set to ban live sheep exports. What will this mean for the industry?

This month the federal government announced a plan to ban live sheep exports, set to come into effect from May 1 2028. The announcement coincided with the release of a highly anticipated report by an independent panel...

Latest inflation figures are good news

The U.S. economy is slowing, but not crashing. In the dismal science, this is what counts as good news. Thats the message I took away from the latest inflation data, released May 15, 2024, which showed U.S. consumer...

The budget is full of good news, but good news isn’t the same as good management

This years budget has something for everyone, with very little in the way of cuts and no new taxes. Its a classic good news pre-election budget. Whether it is too good to be true hinges on whether this budget...

Politics

How Iran selects its supreme leader

The sudden death of President Ebrahim Raisi is unlikely to drastically alter Irans foreign and domestic policies, but it has left a power vacuum. As stipulated by the constitution, Raisi was replaced by his first vice...

California is about to tax guns more like alcohol and tobacco

Starting in July 2024, California will be the first state to charge an excise tax on guns and ammunition. The new tax an 11% levy on each sale will come on top of federal excise taxes of 10% or 11% for firearms and...

US election: why Latino and Hispanic voters are shifting to Trump after a long history of supporting the Democrats

Several recent polls suggest that the Hispanic and Latino vote is shifting towards Donald Trump as the election moves closer. In a YouGov poll from May 8, 43% of Americans said they would vote for President Joe Biden...

Slovakia’s polarised politics: Robert Fico warned a politician could be violently attacked weeks before assassination attempt

Slovak society is in shock after a 71-year-old man fired five shots at the prime minister, Robert Fico, while he was greeting a small crowd after a meeting. Some members of the coalition government immediately blamed...

Infected blood scandal – what you need to know

The infected blood scandal has been hailed the worst treatment disaster in the history of the NHS. Over 3,000 people have died as a result of receiving contaminated blood products in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, and it is...

Science

Ancient DNA from an extinct native duck reveals how far birds flew to make New Zealand home

Ask a bird lover if they have heard of the extinct giant moa or its ancient predator, Haasts eagle, and the answer will likely be yes. The same cant be said of New Zealands extinct, but equally unique, mergansers a group...

Black holes are mysterious, yet also deceptively simple − a new space mission may help physicists answer hairy questions about these astronomical objects

Physicists consider black holes one of the most mysterious objects that exist. Ironically, theyre also considered one of the simplest. For years, physicists like me have been looking to prove that black holes are more...

Is dark matter’s main rival theory dead? There’s bad news from the Cassini spacecraft and other recent tests

One of the biggest mysteries in astrophysics today is that the forces in galaxies do not seem to add up. Galaxies rotate much faster than predicted by applying Newtons law of gravity to their visible matter, despite those...

Why are algorithms called algorithms? A brief history of the Persian polymath you’ve likely never heard of

Algorithms have become integral to our lives. From social media apps to Netflix, algorithms learn your preferences and prioritise the content you are shown. Google Maps and artificial intelligence are nothing without...

IceCube researchers detect a rare type of energetic neutrino sent from powerful astronomical objects

About a trillion tiny particles called neutrinos pass through you every second. Created during the Big Bang, these relic neutrinos exist throughout the entire universe, but they cant harm you. In fact, only one of them is...

Technology

PayPal Expands PYUSD to Solana, Targets Payment Use Cases with Enhanced Efficiency

PayPal has expanded its PYUSD stablecoin to the Solana blockchain, enhancing transaction efficiency and targeting new payment use cases, according to a May 28 announcement. PayPal Expands PYUSD to Solana, Enhancing...

Shiba Inu (SHIB) Stuns Community With Exciting Tweet: Details, Insider Shares Crucial Message

Shiba Inu (SHIB) stunned its community with an exciting tweet, sparking speculation. An insider also shared a crucial message, warning about potential scams. Shiba Inus Enigmatic Tweet Ignites Speculation and Boosts...

Israel Launches Digital Shekel CBDC Experiment for Payments, Inspired by Project Rosalind

Israel has launched an experiment for its digital shekel CBDC, inspired by Project Rosalind, aiming to enhance digital payments. Bank of Israel Collaborates with Service Providers for Digital Shekel CBDC, Launches...

Shiba Inu Marketing Lead Rejoices as SHIB Price Rallies 16%, Flips Cardano

Shiba Inu (SHIB) surged 16% in value, surpassing Cardano, with marketing lead Lucie celebrating the milestone. Shiba Inu Overtakes Cardano in Market Cap Amid 16% Price Surge, Gains Praise from SHIB Marketing Lead In...
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