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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Describe the effects of mining in shallow, intermediate and deep environments on stress distribution 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
256874  Describe the effects of mining in shallow, intermediate and deep environments on stress distribution 
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 pursuing a career in Rock Engineering.

This unit standard is intended to promote general skills, knowledge and understanding of the effects of mining at shallow, intermediate and deep environments on stress distribution in the mining and minerals sector in order to ensure knowledgeable and informed workers.

People credited with this unit standard are able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of stress distribution around openings.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of depth on horizontal and vertical stress distribution and the significance to underground excavations.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the stress related factors controlling the stability of underground excavations in different depth environments.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the influence of stress distributions on seismic activity. 

  • 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 stress distribution around openings. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The principles of the Kirsch equations are described by means of using simple sketches. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The concepts of radial and tangential stresses are explained and related to changing k-ratios in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The method for determining the zone of stress influence between excavations is explained from the basis of the Kirsch equations in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The extent of rock fracture around an opening is assessed by comparing the stress distribution and the strength of the rock mass in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    Hazards and risks pertaining to the stress distribution are identified and explained with reference to occupational health and safety and environmental impact. The appropriate preventive measures are described in accordance with specified requirements. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of depth on horizontal and vertical stress distribution and the significance to underground excavations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The method of calculating the vertical virgin stress at a given depth is demonstrated in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The concept of k-ratio is explained and the way it typically changes with depth below surface is described in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The concept of stress induced fracturing is explained in terms of strength to stress relationships in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Explanations are provided on the typical fracture frequencies around excavations associated with various stress distributions in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 5 
    The relationship between stress, stope closure and Energy Release Rate (ERR) is described for the different depth environments in the context of mining operations. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the stress related factors controlling the stability of underground excavations in different depth environments. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The concept that an excavation is affected by the location, orientation and magnitude of the stress field is explained in terms of the excavation's stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The extent of the tensile zone in the rockwall and its effect on excavation stability is described for the various depth environments. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The creation of clamping forces is described in terms of their role in the stability of rockwalls for the different depth environments. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The concept of additional stress induced by excavating is explained with respect to proximity to other excavations. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the influence of stress distributions on seismic activity. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The potential for seismic activity is described for the different depth environments as a function of the magnitude and orientation of the stress tensor. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Explanations are provided for the relationships between stress and seismic activity on discontinuities in terms of the frequency, condition and persistence of natural and induced discontinuities. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Explanations are provided for the relationships between stress and seismic activity on pillars in terms of the strength of pillars. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Explanations are provided for the relationships between stress and face bursting in terms of the stress distribution ahead of the face. 


    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 and understanding that the assessor will evaluate:
  • Stress distribution around openings.
  • Effect of depth on horizontal and vertical stress distribution and the significance to underground excavations.
  • Stress related factors controlling the stability of underground excavations in different depth environments.
  • The influence of stress distributions on seismic activity.

    Causes and effects (Occupational Health and Safety):
  • 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 
    The following critical cross-field outcomes are addressed in this unit standard:

    Identify and solve problems and make decisions using critical and creative thinking.

    Note:
  • The ability of the learner to explain the factors that govern stress distribution in different depth environments. 

  • 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 stress distribution on excavation stability confirms importance for mine workers safety. 

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

    Note:
  • The learner's ability to critically evaluate the effect of stress on seismic activity and excavation stability. 

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

    Note:
  • The application of the understanding of the relationships between stress and risk of failure. 

  • 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 that the depth environment is a key factor that governs the rockmass response to mining, which in turn determines the stability of underground excavations. 

  • 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:

    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 and Safety Act and Regulations, 1996 (Act 29/1996), and Minerals Act and Regulations, 1991 (Act 50/1991).
  • Mandatory Codes of Practice.
  • SANS and other relevant Standards.
  • Chief Inspector of Mines' Directives/Instructions.
  • Guidelines issued by the Chief Inspector of Mines.

    Site-specific:
  • Hazard Identification and Risk Assessments (HIRA).
  • Occupational Health and Safety Risk Management Programme.
  • Managerial Instructions.
  • Mine Standard Procedures.
  • List of Recorded OH and 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.