HYAFRICA convenes in Pretoria, South Africa, on raising awareness on Natural Hydrogen

HYAFRICA convenes in Pretoria, South Africa, on raising awareness on Natural Hydrogen

HYAFRICA convenes in Pretoria, South Africa, on raising awareness on Natural Hydrogen

Roundtable discussion. From left to right: Dr. Ansie Smit (University of Pretoria), Dr. Malte Lindenmeyer (Fraunhofer IEE), Prof. Adam Bumby (University of Pretoria), Prof. Júlio Carneiro (CONVERGE), Mr. Mbangiseni Mabudafhasi (Department of Science and Innovation), and Prof. David Walwyn (University of Pretoria).

Capacity building and raising awareness on natural hydrogen among stakeholders of target areas is one of the specific objectives of the HyAfrica project. With this goal in mind, the first  workshop on the subject of “Raising Awareness About Natural Hydrogen” took place in 14 of September 2023, in Pretoria, South Africa. The second General Assembly of HyAfrica, organized by the University of Pretoria, was schedule to coincide with the workshop and with the beginning of the second field work campaign for natural hydrogen probing in the Mpumalanga region.

Raising Awareness About Natural Hydrogen

In the workshop, stakeholders were presented with the current state of the art in natural hydrogen research, the HyAfrica project, and the results of the first HyAfrica field campaign of natural hydrogen exploration in South Africa. A first ever discussion regarding national policy requirements and regulatory issues was also held. The event was organized by University of Pretoria and was attended by stakeholders and researchers, both online and in-person, at the Hatfield Campus.

Presentations were held that addressed the global status of natural hydrogen research, details of the HyAfrica project, the first field work results showing data collected from South Africa, and the hydrogen roadmap in South Africa (HySA), presented by the invited speaker Mr. Mbangiseni Mabudafhasi (Department of Science and Innovation). The final event was a roundtable discussion that included a presentation by Professor emeritus David Walwyn “Is there a role for Natural Hydrogen in South Africa?”. 

This workshop formed part of the core objectives of HyAfrica project, was a very successful event with many attendees from different public and private institutions and sectors including academia, research, mining and energy. In addition to external stakeholders, the workshop was also attended by HyAfrica partners from University of Limpopo (South Africa), the Fraunhofer IEE (Germany), the Liebniz Institute for Applied Geophysics (Germany) and The University of Eduardo Mondlane (Mozambique).

A General Assembly to discuss progress and next steps

General Assembly of the Project in Pretoria

The General Assembly meeting, organised in conjunction with the workshop, allowed the HyAfrica partners to run in-depth communications and discussions related to the first-year work, results and to define future actions to achieve the ambitious project objectives. This occasion also initiated the work related with developing roadmaps for exploitation and socio-economic impacts and business plans.

A field workday for natural hydrogen probing was also carried out. It allowed to some of the project partners to familiarize with part of the South Africa study region and field measurement proceedings. From that point, the South Africa team composed of elements from University of Pretoria and University of Limpopo executed two weeks of field work in the Mpumalanga region.

More about HyAfrica: https://www.leap-re.eu/hyafrica/

The LEAP-RE consortium gathers 83 African and European partners covering a wide range of sectors: education/research, private sector, policy and funding. Together, they are building a long-term partnership of African and European stakeholders committed to fostering research and innovation for the development of renewable energy.

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