Mechanical and electrical engineering - heavy current

Mechanical and electrical engineering – heavy current

No mine can operate without electricity. The provision of power and the maintenance of equipment and machinery is the responsibility of the engineering department whose main aim is to ensure that the technical support necessary to meet production targets is provided to the mining and metallurgical departments.

In addition, the engineering department is also responsible for:

  • the installation and maintenance of large systems such as underground ventilation and cooling, as well as the hoisting of men, materials, equipment and rock
  • the management, training and development of learners, technicians, artisans, foremen, learner officials and junior engineers
  • mechanical and electrical engineers are also involved in designing and planning for developing mines and in the creation, development and management of new technologies.

Mechanical engineering

Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. A career in this discipline involves the design, production, manufacture and maintenance of the various pieces of equipment, machinery and engines used in almost every type of industry and technology. Mechanical engineering is often regarded as the foundation of modern technology because many of the successful tool and equipment applications are based on the principles of mechanical engineering.

Electrical engineering

The field of electrical engineering is divided into heavy current and light current engineering. Heavy current electrical engineering is concerned with the supply, distribution, transformation and use of electrical power. Work in this area is characterised by high voltage power systems. Electrical engineers are involved in the design, manufacture, installation and management of various appliances and systems that generate or use electrical energy such as substations, ventilation systems and pumps.


Fact sheet

  A Career at Implats
February 2011  (PDF - 342KB)  


Human resources

North-West operations

Glynis Scott, HR Manager: Recruitment

Gauteng Operations (Refineries/Head Office)

Nicolette Jansen van Rensburg, Senior Human Resources Officer

Marula (Limpopo Province)

Paula Shihlomule, Senior Human Resources Officer

Zimplats (Zimbabwe)

Joshua Ndoziya, Senior Human Resources Officer


Kefiloe Seome

Light current engineering or electronics is concerned with the application of low power electrical systems. The electronic engineer designs, manufactures, installs and manages the systems, equipment and components used in telecommunications, navigation, data processing and process control.

What you should study

If you want to become an engineer at Impala, you can work towards graduating with a BSc in either mechanical or electrical engineering – heavy current. This is a four-year, full time course. You will need to obtain a medical certificate of fitness, undergo a psychometric assessment and attend an interview. If you have received a bursary from Implats, you will be required to complete structured vacation work at Impala.

Graduate career

Graduates in mechanical and electrical engineering join the mine or work as engineers-in-training for a minimum of two years. The purpose of this training programme is to provide important skills which will produce well qualified engineers.