SAQA All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.
SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate an elementary understanding of pillar characteristics, behaviour and function 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
115746  Demonstrate an elementary understanding of pillar characteristics, behaviour and function 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Mining and Minerals 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 06 - Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology Fabrication and Extraction 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 3  NQF Level 03 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Reregistered  2018-07-01  2023-06-30  SAQA 06120/18 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2024-06-30   2027-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This unit standard does not replace any other unit standard and is not replaced by any other unit standard. 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
This unit standard will be useful to people who are pursuing a career in rock engineering.

People credited with this unit standard are able to
  • Demonstrate elementary knowledge of the environments and pillars used in the various environments;
  • Demonstrate elementary knowledge of pillar characteristics and behaviour;
  • Demonstrate elementary understanding of the support function of pillars in different mining methods;
  • Demonstrate elementary knowledge of methodologies to design pillars.

    The skills, knowledge and understanding demonstrated within this unit standard are essential for social and economic transformation and contribute to the upliftment and economic growth of the mining and minerals sector

    This unit standard is intended to promote general skills, knowledge and understanding of demonstrate an elementary understanding of pillar characteristics, behaviour and function in the mining and minerals sector in order to ensure knowledgeable and informed workers 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    The credit calculation is based on the assumption that learners are already competent in terms of the following outcomes or areas of learning when starting to learn towards this unit standard:
  • National Certificate in Strata Control (Level 2) 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    Specific range statements are provided in the body of the unit standard where they apply to particular specific outcomes or assessment criteria. 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Demonstrate elementary knowledge of the environments and pillars used in the various environments. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Various mining environments are described in elementary terms. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Shallow, intermediate, deep and ultra-deep mining
  • Wide reefs, multi-reefs
  • Longwall, sequential grid, bord-and-pillar.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The pillar types used in the various mining environments are described in elementary terms. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Crush pillars
  • Non-yield pillars
  • Yield pillars
  • Bracket pillars
  • Boundary pillars
  • Stabilizing pillars
  • Water barrier pillars
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate elementary knowledge of pillar characteristics and behaviour. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The expected pillar behaviours for various pillar types are described in elementary terms. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Crush pillars
  • Non-yield pillars
  • Yield pillars
  • Bracket pillars
  • Boundary pillars
  • Stabilizing pillars
  • Water barrier pillars.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The issues that affect pillar behaviour are listed and explained. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Pillar dimensions
  • Extraction ratio
  • Width : Height ratio
  • Rock strength
  • Depth
  • Extent of mining
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The concept of safety factor is explained. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Stress-strain graphs to represent pillar behaviour are explained in elementary terms. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Pre and post failure curves
  • Effect of increased width to height ratios.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Demonstrate elementary knowledge of methodologies used to design pillars. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Design methodologies of special pillars are explained in basic terms. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Bracket pillar
  • Boundary pillar
  • Shaft pillar
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Design methodologies of other support pillars are explained in basic terms. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Stabilizing pillar
  • Crush pillars
  • Yield pillars
  • Non-yield pillars
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate understanding of the effects of incorrect pillars on mine stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Basic explanation of the consequences of inappropriate pillar types implemented in a specific mining environment. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Basic explanation of the consequences of unexpected pillar behaviour. 


    UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
    1. Anyone assessing a learner against this unit standard must be registered as an assessor with the relevant ETQA.

    2. Any institution offering learning that will enable achievement of this unit standard must be accredited as a provider through the relevant ETQA by SAQA.

    3. Moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant ETQA according to the moderation guidelines and the agreed ETQA procedures. 

    UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    The following embedded knowledge is addressed in an integrated way in the unit standard:
  • Health and safety
  • Report writing
  • Legal and site-specific requirements 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identify and solve problems and make decisions using critical and creative thinking.
    Note: The ability of the candidate to use knowledge of pillars to propose support systems for various mining environments confirms. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Work effectively with others as members of a team, group, organisation or community.
    Note: Not applicable to this unit standard. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Organise and manage themselves and their activities responsibly and effectively.
    Note: Not applicable to this unit standard. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information.
    Note: The ability of the candidate to gather the necessary information and to use this information in deciding on the appropriate pillar systems and assist him in the design of the pillar systems, confirms. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Communicate effectively, using visual, mathematical and / or language skills in the modes of oral and / or written presentations.
    Note: Not applicable to this unit standard. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Use science and technology effectively and critically, showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.
    Note: The use of science and technology is promoted through the use of pillar design formulae and the calculations associated with the formulae. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems by recognising that problem-solving contexts do not exist in isolation.
    Note: The understanding that the application of the correct pillar layout and the correct design of such layouts are essential to ensure the health and safety of mining personnel, confirms 

    UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    Assessors should keep the following principles in mind when designing and conducting assessments against this unit standard:
  • Focus the assessment activities on gathering evidence in terms of the main outcome expressed in the title to ensure assessment is integrated rather than fragmented. Remember, we want to declare the person competent in terms of the title. Where assessment at title level is unmanageable, then focus assessment around each specific outcome, or groups of specific outcomes.
  • Make sure evidence is gathered across the entire range, wherever it applies. Assessment activities should be as close to the real performance as possible, and where simulations or role-plays are used, there should be supporting evidence to show the candidate is able to perform in the real situation.
  • Do not focus the assessment activities on each assessment criterion. Rather make sure the assessment activities focus on outcomes and are sufficient to enable evidence to be gathered around all the assessment criteria.
  • The assessment criteria provide the specifications against which assessment judgements should be made. In most cases, knowledge can be inferred from the quality of the performances, but in other cases, knowledge and understanding will have to be tested through questioning techniques. Where this is required, there will be assessment criteria to specify the standard required.
  • The task of the assessor is to gather sufficient evidence - of the prescribed type and quality as specified in this unit standard - that the candidate can achieve the outcomes again and again and again. This means assessors will have to judge how many repeat performances are required before they believe the performance is reproducible.
  • All assessments should be conducted in line with the following well-documented principles of assessment, namely appropriateness, fairness, manageability, integration into work or learning, validity, direct, authentic, sufficient, systematic, open and consistent. 

  • REREGISTRATION HISTORY 
    As per the SAQA Board decision/s at that time, this unit standard was Reregistered in 2012; 2015. 

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    Terminology

    Specified requirements

    Specified requirements include legal and site-specific requirements and are contained in one or more of the following documents:

    Legal
  • Relevant Acts: e.g. Mine Health & Safety Act, 1996 (Act no 29/1996), and Minerals Act and Regulations, 1991 (Act no 50/1991)
  • Mandatory Codes of Practice
  • SABS and other relevant Standards
  • Chief Inspector of Mines' Directives

    Site specific
  • Hazard Identification and Risk Assessments (HIRA)
  • Occupational Health and Safety Risk Management Programme
  • Managerial Instructions
  • Mine Standard Procedures
  • List of Recorded OH&S Risks
  • Working Guides
  • Equipment and Materials Specifications

    Unit standard justification

    Level

    Attribute-Level-Justification
    Skills-4-Wide-ranging scholastic or technical

    Procedures-3-Significant choice.

    Context-4-Variety of familiar and unfamiliar.

    Knowledge-3-Some relevant theoretical

    Information processing-4-Basic analytical interpretation of information

    Problem Solving-3-A range of known responses to familiar problems, base on limited discretion and judgement.

    Orientation of activities-3-Directed, with some autonomy.

    Orientation of scope of responsibility-3-Significant responsibility for the quantity and quality of output, and possible responsibility for the output of others

    Application of responsibility-4-Under broad guidance and evaluation.

    Average level: = 3.44
    Actual level assigned: = 3

    Credits

    Total hours required by the learner to achieve the required outcome:

    Activity-Hours
    Classroom Teaching-24
    On-The-Job Training-6
    Mentoring required-0
    Other (Specify)-0
    Total-30

    Credits achieved: = 30 / 10 = 3.0
    Credits assigned: = 3 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  60369   National Certificate: Strata Control Operations  Level 3  NQF Level 03  Reregistered  2023-06-30  MQA 
    Elective  50082   Further Education and Training Certificate: Minerals Surveying  Level 4  NQF Level 04  Passed the End Date -
    Status was "Reregistered" 
    2012-06-30  MQA 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    NONE 



    All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.