Dr Fisseha Mekuria, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research
Dr Quentin Williams, Strategic Research Manager, CSIR Meraka Institute
One of the important enablers for Industry 4.0 is the 5th generation ICT eco-system being standardized by 5G public private partnership (5GPPP) under the ITU. 5GPP describes the 5th generation ICT-ecosystem as the most transformative technology standard in the history of mankind. The 5G ICT-eco system standards is composed of three distinct pillars that aim to address; (a) enhanced mobile broadband enabling gigabit ICT services such as video-on-demand, (b) Low network latency enabling critical infrastructure and control services for industrial applications; (c) Energy efficiency and network coverage to enable the 50 billion sensing devices, machine-2-machine (M2M) communications and Internet of Things devices and services. The three pillars of the 5G ICT eco-system will have a more significant impact in the high economic urban areas throughout the world. Underserved and digitally excluded rural communities in emerging markets need to devise innovative policy and regulatory frameworks to be able and partake in the upcoming 5th generation ICT supported industrialization and build their knowledge economy.The Science talk will touch upon some of the disruptive technologies, skill sets, regulations and policies that emerging market research organizations including the CSIR are working to influence the 5G standards. The focus is to address emerging economy use cases, improve beneficiation from the new industrial revolution and enable transformational innovation in the development of Industry 4.0 applications and services in South Africa and emerging economy countries.
Dr F. Mekuria, CSIR Chief Research Scientist, South Africa
Dr. F. Mekuria, Chief Research Scientist, CSIR Meraka ICT Institute, South Africa. He leads the 5G and Affordable Broadband Networks research at the CSIR. He is the proponent of a 4th leg for the 5G standards aimed at technologies for addressing the next billion underserved population in emerging economies. He has a PhD from Linköping University, in Sweden, and has a past as senior research Engineer at Ericsson Mobile Communications R&D lab in Sweden, where he developed over 12 US/EPO patents. He is at present leading the disruptive technology research in dynamic spectrum sharing at the CSIR, and made headlines as the only emerging economy technology patent contribution and by successfully completing an international qualification process lead by the UK Ofcom regulator . Dr Mekuria also holds an Adj. Professor position at the University of Johannesburg, Faculty of Electrical and Electronics Engineering Science.
Dr Williamsis a strategic research manager at the CSIR, and focuses on the formulation and implementation of research strategy within the information and communications (ICT) domain and in particular, he facilitates data science skills programmes across the national ICT research and development ecosystem for the CSIR. He completed a BEng in electronic engineering at Stellenbosch University, followed by a PhD in engineering from the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom with emphasis on using medical image analyses to understand cardiac disease.