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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD THAT HAS PASSED THE END DATE: 

Operate an anaerobic digester 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
12047  Operate an anaerobic digester 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Water Sector 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 12 - Physical Planning and Construction Civil Engineering Construction 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Passed the End Date -
Status was "Reregistered" 
2005-02-09  2008-02-09  SAQA 1058/05 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2009-02-09   2012-02-09  

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 is replaced by: 
US ID Unit Standard Title Pre-2009 NQF Level NQF Level Credits Replacement Status
255985  Operate an anaerobic wastewater sludge digester  Level 3  NQF Level 03  Complete 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
The qualifying learner achieving this unit standard in combination with context expertise standard(s) will be able to operate an anaerobic digester in accordance with legislation, guidelines and procedures. This competence will enable the learner to monitor and maintain the anaerobic digester and interpret laboratory analytical results related to the functioning of the digester. Achieving this unit standard will enhance the efficiency of the qualifying learner as part of a wastewater team and advance his/her own expertise and employability in wastewater. 

LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
Numeracy NQF level 2;
Apply personal safety practices NQF level 2. 

UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
Work policies and procedures:
Best operating procedures.

Laboratory analytical results:
pH, alkalinity, volatile acids, temperature, solids (organic and inorganic)

Reports:
Maintenance, faults, irregularities.

Information:
Flows, quality, sample readings, breakdowns, incidents material requisitions etc. 

Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
Operate sludge pump in accordance with work policies and procedures 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
1. Pumps are checked while in operation for correct functioning. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
2. Sludge is checked for correct flow rate and concentration. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
3. Valve positions are checked. 

SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
Operate anaerobic digester in accordance with works procedures and legislation 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
1. Inflow is monitored. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
2. Anaerobic digester is operated. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
3. Problems are identified and appropriate corrective action is explained. 

SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
Monitor anaerobic digester 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
1. Sludge is monitored and samples are withdrawn at appropriate times. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
2. Gas production is monitored. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
3. Condensation is monitored and drained from gas line when necessary. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
4. pH levels are monitored and high / low levels are recorded and appropriate corrective action is taken. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
5. Laboratory analytical results are interpreted accurately and corrective action is explained. 

SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
Maintain anaerobic digester in accordance with work policies and procedures 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
1. Visual inspection of structure is completed. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
2. Seal on digester is checked. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
3. Routine maintenance and structural damage is identified and reported. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
4. Fault reports are accurate and the importance of accuracy is explained. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
5. Safety procedures are explained and demonstrated. 

SPECIFIC OUTCOME 5 
Complete designated tasks and reports in accordance with work policies and procedures 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
1. Designated tasks are completed. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
2. Reports are accurate and complete and handed in to relevant person. 

ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
3. Relevant information is communicated. 


UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against this unit standard must be registered as an assessor with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this unit standard must be accredited as a provider with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant ETQA according to the ETQA`s policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation..
  • Moderation must include both internal and external moderation of assessments at exit points of the qualification, unless ETQA policies specify otherwise. Moderation should also encompass achievement of the competence described both in individual unit standards as well as the integrated competence described in the qualification. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    Learners should have a knowledge and understanding of:
  • Relevant sections of Legislation: OHS Act, National Water Act when operating an anaerobic digester
  • The importance of following safety procedures
  • The dangers of naked flames near the structure
  • The importance of monitoring gas levels
  • The principles of anaerobic digesters (Recirculation, mixing and heating)
  • Heating options
  • Mixing options
  • The difference between aerobic and anaerobic digesters
  • Sample procedures for digesters
  • Anaerobic digester configurations
  • Pipe layout of digester specific to own works
  • Chemical methods for analytical procedures
  • Gases in an anaerobic digester
  • Confined space entry procedures
  • Types of digester processes: (1) High rate (2) Standard rate
  • Difference between cryophyllic, mesophyllic and thermophyllic operating temperatures 


  • Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identify and solve problems in which responses display that responsible decisions using critical and creative thinking have been made.

    Assessment criteria:
  • Sludge is checked for correct flow rate and concentration.
  • Inflow is monitored.
  • Anaerobic digester is operated.
  • Fault reports are accurate and the importance of accuracy is explained.
  • Safety procedures are explained and demonstrated.
  • Relevant information is communicated. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Work effectively with others as a member of a team, group, organisation, and community.

    Assessment criteria:
  • None. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Plan, organise and manage oneself and one`s activities responsibly and effectively.

    Assessment criteria:
  • Pumps are checked while in operation for correct functioning.
  • Valve positions are checked. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information.

    Assessment criteria:
  • Sludge is checked for correct flow rate and concentration.
  • Inflow is monitored.
  • Anaerobic digester is operated.
  • Fault reports are accurate and the importance of accuracy is explained.
  • Safety procedures are explained and demonstrated.
  • Relevant information is communicated. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Communicate effectively using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the form of oral and/or written presentation.

    Assessment criteria:
  • Sludge is checked for correct flow rate and concentration.
  • Inflow is monitored.
  • Anaerobic digester is operated.
  • Fault reports are accurate and the importance of accuracy is explained.
  • Safety procedures are explained and demonstrated.
  • Relevant information is communicated. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Use science and technology effectively and critically, showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.

    Assessment criteria:
  • Pumps are checked while in operation for correct functioning. 

  • 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.

    Assessment criteria:
  • None. 

  • UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    This unit standard has been replaced by unit standard 255985, which is "Operate an anaerobic wastewater sludge digester", Level 3, 7 credits.

    Integrated assessment:

    When conducting assessments, assessors must ensure that they are familiar with the full text of the unit standards being assessed. Assessors must ensure that the assessment covers the specific outcomes, critical cross-field outcomes and essential embedded knowledge by developing assessment activities and tools, which are appropriate to the contexts in which the learners are working. These activities and tools may include self-assessment, peer assessment, formative and summative assessment. It may be more effective and efficient to assess a number of unit standards together in an integrated way, thus reducing the overall number of assessments and ensuring that commonalities that exist between a number of unit standards are captured in a way that makes sense for assessment.

    Assessment option:

    Learners could be assessed using the following methods:
    Oral or written questions
    Observation 

    QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  22672   National Certificate: Wastewater Process Control  Level 4  NQF Level 04  Passed the End Date -
    Status was "Reregistered" 
    2008-06-11  Was EWSETA until Last Date for Achievement 
    Elective  22673   National Certificate: Wastewater Process Operations  Level 2  NQF Level 02  Passed the End Date -
    Status was "Reregistered" 
    2007-11-28  Was EWSETA until Last Date for Achievement 


    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.
     
    1. IYANDA HOLDINGS (PTY) LTD 



    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.