WASHINGTON — The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) has elected 83 new members and 16 foreign members, announced NAE President C. D. (Dan) Mote, Jr., today. This brings the total U.S. membership to 2,293 and the number of foreign members to 262.

Election to the National Academy of Engineering is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to an engineer. Academy membership honors those who have made outstanding contributions to "engineering research, practice, or educa-tion, including, where appropriate, significant contributions to the engineering literature" and to "the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology, making major advancements in traditional fields of engineering, or developing/implementing innovative approaches to engineering education."

Individuals in the newly elected class will be formally inducted during a ceremony at the NAE's annual meeting in Washing-ton, D.C., on Sept. 30, 2018. A list of the newly elected members and foreign members follows, with their primary affilia-tions at the time of election and a brief statement of their principal engineering accomplishments.

Napier, John A.L., extraordinary professor, department of mining engineering, University of Pretoria, Hatfield, Pretoria, South Africa. For contributions to computational simulation of rock fracture around underground excavations.

Prof. Don U. Deere died on 14 January 2018 in Gainsville, Florida. He was born in 1922, in Mt. Etna, Iowa. He was part of a small group of rock engineers that decisively influenced the development of rock mechanics in the 20th century.

Prof. Deere graduated in Mining Engineering at Iowa State University and obtained a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering at the University of Illinois in 1955. An expert on tunnelling, dam building and design, and the construction of large underground spaces, in 1989 he was appointed as Chairman of the US Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board. He received numerous distinctions throughout his career including being elected to both the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Sciences.

After working as a mining engineer in Arizona and New Mexico, Don moved to the University of Puerto Rico and started the Foundation Engineering Company of Puerto Rico. In 1955 he accepted an appointment as an associate professor at the University of Illinois. In 1972 he moved to Gainesville where he co-founded Deere and Merritt, a consulting firm in geology and rock mechanics, and joined the University of Florida.

He wrote and co-authored numerous papers and was the inventor of the rock mass assessment tool, the RQD – Rock Quality Designation. Together with Prof. Giovanni Lombardi, he invented the GIN method of grouting. He was the President of the Commission on Standardization of Laboratory and Field Tests of the ISRM from 1968 to 1973.

At this time our thoughts are with his close family and friends.

You are invited to the Mining and Tunnelling Seminar.

Agenda: Innovations and experiences in ground support for the mining and hydropower industry

Where: Ruimsig Country Club

When: 15 February 2018 from 8:30 (registrations); will continue until around 16:00

Contact: Mariette Esterhuyse (mariette.esterhuyse@geobrugg.com) on Tel. +27 83 7725564

Cost: Free of charge

Obituary Notice: Prof. Richard Z.T. Bieniawski,

Prof. Richard Z.T. Bieniawski, 81, of Prescott, Arizona died Monday December 11, 2017 at his home. He was born October 1, 1936 in Krakow, Poland.

Dr. Hon. Causa (Madrid, Spain), Dr. Hon. Causa (AGH, Krakow, Poland), Ph.D. M. Sc. Distinguished Professor (ret.) and President, Bieniawski Design Enterprises, Prescott, Arizona.

Paper 1 is a general theoretical paper covering basic rock mechanics theory applicable in all types of mining environments, surface as well as underground. This course will cover the Syllabi for Paper 1, preparing the candidate attempting the certificate of competence examination on the themes of stress & strain, constitutive behaviour, rock properties, stress in rock & rockmasses and rockmass properties.
The course will be presented over 5 days (12-16 March 2018), allowing sufficient time for transferring knowledge and information, resolving misunderstood concepts and practical.
For more information please contact:
Mpolokeng Rammutloa - mpolokeng.rammutloa@enterprises.up.ac.za
Jannie Maritz - jannie.maritz@up.ac.za

Dear SANIRE Members
In the recent past a couple of SANIRE members have received suspicious emails from unknow email addresses requested a refund with an attached Proof of Payment (PoP). This is currently a scam which is doing its rounds. Please note that the email does not come from info@sanire.co.za but other email addresses with info@sanire.co.za used in the signature section or as an address to send the PoP back too. Please do not reply to these emails. Please note that no personal information is accessible via the webpage and all personal details are safe with the SANIRE Secretary.
SANIRE President
Jannie Maritz

Dear Members
Please follow the links to the latest quarterly newsletter.


This is your newsletter and I would like to hear from you. If you have any information or stories that we can use, please submit them via email to alida.hartzenberg@lonmin.com

Your feedback will be highly appreciated.

Alida Hartzenberg


Firstly, I would like to congratulate the organizing committee from both SANIRE and SAIMM on the recently presented AfriRock 2017 Conference in Cape Town. As in the metaphor of the calm duck on the pond, with feet kicking frantically under the surface, this event was no different. You will be able to read more on the event inside this edition of Rocktalk.

Following a series of events and responsibilities, I was again reminded of a piece I read a while back pertaining to the way people communicate, which I try to follow in my life as well. We are good in telling people what needs to be done; however, the moment we turn our back, nothing changes. We all live and die by the 5 rules concerning safety, but No. 5 – “Will they continue working safe when I leave?” – is seldom positively answered. After the time spent on presenting your case, it is business as usual. The answer as to why might be in the following ques- tion: Are you good as a presenter, or can you persuade people to change?


AfriRock 2017 plenary session

AfriRock 2017, the International Society for Rock Mechanics (ISRM) International Symposium for 2017, was held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in the beautiful city of Cape Town, South Africa, from the 3rd to the 5th October 2017. This is the first conference of that name and the first African ISRM International Symposium since the Tuni-sian and Zimbabwean National Groups joined the African Region of the ISRM. The Symposium was jointly organised by the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM) and the South African National Institute of Rock Engineering (SANIRE). It was well attended by 264 delegates from 42 countries. Each of the ISRM regions was represented: Africa (135 delegates), Asia (56, with 33 from China), Australasia (10), Europe (36), North America (13) and South Ameri-ca (14). Africa’s proud participation was evident through the number of delegates from Botswana, DRC, Egypt, Ghana, Lesotho, Swaziland, Tunisia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, together with a substantial number of delegates from South Africa.


Prof. Francois Malan receives Franklyn Award

Prof. Francois Malan was honoured by the ISRM board with the Franklin award at AfriRock 2017 where he presented on “Numerical Modelling of Tabular Excavations: Old Problems and New Solutions”. The Franklyn award is presented annually to recognise the achievements of a mid-career ISRM member who has made a significant contribution to a specific area of Rock Mechanics and/or Rock Engineering in the country where the ISRM annual conference will be hosted.


Dr. Michael du Plessis nominated as the Rocha Award winner for 2017

Dr. Michael du Plessis’s PhD thesis titled “The design and behaviour of crush pillars on the Merensky Reef” was announced by the ISRM board as the best PhD thesis for 2017. The Rocha medal is awarded annually by the international committee to the best PhD study in the field of Rock Mechanics or Rock Engineering. Michael will be receiving the Rocha medal for his study at the next ISRM International conference which will be held in Singapore in 2018.