Osiris-Invengo partnership takes RFID technology to TUT students
The Telecommunication Department of Tshwane University of Technology is set to benefit after Osiris Technical Systems, in partnership with Invengo Technology Europe donated almost R50 000 worth of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) equipment to the faculty.
The donation includes a state-of-the-art Invengo RF861 Reader, XCF12 Antenna and a variety of different UHF RFID Tags as well as a Hand-Held RFID reader.
The current instability at major universities has highlighted the need for the private sector to become involved. Osiris Technical Systems and Invengo Technology has taken it upon themselves to assist students to be better equipped for the industry and its challenges: this donation empowers students and lecturers to understand and experience first-hand one of the fastest growing fields of technology in the world, Radio Frequency Identification or RFID.
The total RFID market was estimated to be worth $ 10.1 billion (R 140 billion) in 2015, up from $ 9.5 billion in 2014 and $ 8.8 billion in 2013 (source: IDTechEx - US-based market researchers). This global growth in the industry is also reflected in South Africa, where Osiris Technical Systems has seen its RFID division grow four-fold in the last year.
Many students currently enrolled in South Africa's tertiary institutions are not gaining practical experience in the application of technology that support the needs of business. Training in science, technology, engineering and maths are basic requirements for engineering students but exposure and hands-on experience with new technology is what makes a student a valuable future employee. Many organisations face a challenge of finding appropriately trained graduates with complex problem-solving skills, critical thinking and above all, hands on experience in advanced technology. "With this donation Osiris Technical Systems hopes to change some of that at TUT," said Stef du Plessis, Managing Director of Osiris Technical Systems.
"We want to do our bit in narrowing the gap between skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled workers. What better platform to carry this out than at a learning Institution of this stature," says Tiego Mogano of Osiris Technical Systems. Mogano gave a presentation highlighting the basic principles of RFID technology before the equipment was officially handed over to TUT
After the presentation, Trudie du Plessis, the Chief Operating Officer of Osiris Technical Systems had this to say in closing: "As Osiris Technical Systems our doors are open to any student and lecturer with an interest to gain first-hand experience of RFID at our company," to much jubilation and ovation by both students and the staff. She went on to say the company is growing its business in a time of slow growth in South Africa and that this creates need and opportunity for students in the coming year.
In his concluding remarks, Sipho Themba, a lecturer at TUT's Telecommunication department and involved from the initiation of the project, thanked his students, colleagues in the faculty as well as the Osiris-Invengo partnership for the donation, saying: "Thank you for choosing our department for this donation and we hope that this relationship will be unremitting to further learn from each other." He went on to say that: "We have noticed a shortage of RFID skills and skilled personnel in the country. Given that the RFID technology is a fast-growing market worldwide, this donation could not have come at a better time. It will empower TUT and give students access to experience RFID first hand."
Livhuhani Ntsandeni, the Section Head of Undergraduates for N Dip Electrical Engineering who acted on behalf of the HOD for the day, reiterated and echoed the words of Themba: "This partnership is welcomed and we are truly grateful to Osiris for this gift and we can only hope this is the start of the beginning more co-operation in future."