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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate an understanding of the impact of mining spans on excavation stability 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
256854  Demonstrate an understanding of the impact of mining spans on excavation stability 
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 4  NQF Level 04 
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 for people who are required to ensure stability of underground excavations by applying designed mining spans.

This unit standard is intended to promote general skills, knowledge and understanding of the effect of mining spans on working place stability in the mining and minerals sector in order to ensure knowledgeable and informed workers.

People credited with this unit standard are able to:
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concept of mining spans.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the effects of mining spans on excavation stability.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the consequences of creating excessive mining spans on excavation stability.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of ensuring implementation of appropriate mining spans through monitoring. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is assumed that learners are already competent in:
  • Communication and Mathematical literacy at NQF Level 3. 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    N/A 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the concept of mining spans. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The definition of mining spans are explained in accordance with mine specifications. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The rock engineering principles applied in the design of appropriate mining spans are explained in terms of mine specifications. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Rock mass characterisation.
  • Geological models.
  • Retrospective analyses.
  • Computational techniques.
  • Instrumentation and monitoring.
  • Empirical rules.
  • Theory.
  • Local knowledge.
  • Best practice.
  • Codes of practice.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The consequences of not having adequate knowledge of the factors that contribute to the creation of stable mining spans on excavation stability are explained in terms of legal and operational requirements. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the effects of mining spans on excavation stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The relationships between mining span and closure are explained and related to falls of ground and rockbursts. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The exposure of additional discontinuities due to excessive spans and their influence on hazard creation is explained in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The influence of blasting practice on the creation of mining spans is explained in terms of excavation stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The influence that mining spans have on the behaviour of the hangingwall/roof beam are explained in terms of excavation stability. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Relationship between beam length, thickness and loading.
  • Relationship between beam length, thickness and deflection.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the consequences of creating excessive mining spans on excavation stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The increase in the exposure of rock-related hazards associated with increased mining spans is explained in the context of excavation stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The relationship between mining spans and energy release rates are described and related to the increase in incidences of rockbursts. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The increase in the fall of ground risk by creating excessive mining spans is explained in the context of excavation stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The magnitude and severity of excessive spans is explained in terms of the stability of excavations. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Local collapses within excavations.
  • Collapse of excavations within mine.
  • Collapse of entire mine.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    The influence of excessive mining spans on the behaviour of pillars is described with respect to the strength: stress ratio. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate an understanding of ensuring implementation of appropriate mining spans through monitoring. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The methods used to monitor the implementation of designed mining spans are explained in terms of mine specific requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Regular underground measurements.
  • Plan scrutiny.
  • Subsidence monitoring.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Systems used for the recording, communication and reporting of hazards associated with inappropriate mining spans are described in terms of mine specific requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The consequences of not adequately notifying relevant personnel of the incidence of inappropriate mining spans are described in terms of legal and operational requirements. 


    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 Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding 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 Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with 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, unless ETQA policies specify otherwise.
  • Anyone wishing to be assessed against this unit standard may apply to be assessed by any assessment agency, assessor or provider institution that is accredited by the relevant ETQA. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    The following essential embedded knowledge is addressed in an integrated way in the unit standard:

    Knowledge that the assessor will evaluate:
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the concept of mining spans.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the effects of mining spans on excavation stability.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the consequences of creating excessive mining spans on excavation stability.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of ensuring implementation of appropriate mining spans through monitoring.

    Causes and effects (Occupational Health and Safet):
  • Use of equipment.
  • Use of personal protective equipment.
  • Adherence to occupational health and safety requirements.
  • Work related hazards and associated risks.

    Regulations, legislation, agreements, policies and standards:
  • Occupational health, safety and environmental legislation and regulations.
  • Quality policies, standards and agreements. 

  • 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 learner to understand how mining spans influence excavation stability. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Organise and manage themselves and their activities responsibly and effectively.

    Note: The learner's ability to systematically assess the impact of mining spans on excavation stability. 

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

    Note: The ability to understand the rationale for design of optimal mining spans, which addresses the hazards associated with excavation stability. 

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

    Note: The use of neat, simple and concise sketches and equations to demonstrate understanding. 

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

    Note: The ability to apply beam theory to evaluate mining spans. 

    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 knowledge and understanding of the potential effect that inadequate mining spans can have on health, safety and productivity. 

    UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    N/A 

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

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    Terminology:

    Site Specific:

    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. 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Elective  62796   Further Education and Training Certificate: Strata Control Operations  Level 4  NQF Level 04  Reregistered  2023-06-30  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.