Please note that the closing date for the Rock Mechanics practical examinations will be 17 January 2017 and NO late entries will be accepted.

Dear Members,
You are invited to the Joint Symposium of ISRM Young Scholars’ Rock Mechanics Symposium (YSRM2017) and New Development in Rock Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (NDRMGE2017). Please note the following overview and please feel free to forward this information to anybody who might be interested.

  • Title: 2017 ISRM Young Scholars' Symposium on Rock Mechanics (YSRM2017) & 2017 International conference on New Development in Rock Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (NDRMGE2017) – An ISRM Specialized Conference
  • Organizer: Korean Society for Rock Mechanics (KSRM)
  • Sponsor: International Society for Rock Mechanics (ISRM)
  • Date: 10-13 May, 2017
  • Venue: Jeju Island, Korea
  • Important Dates:
    Abstract: 12 December, 2016 (Extended from 11 November, 2016)
    Extended abstract: 11 February, 2017
    Full paper to a special issue (optional): 11 June, 2017
  • Website:

Download the flyer


Dear Member
Attached, please find an invitation to the 9th South African Young Geotechnical Engineers Conference (SAYGEC) to be held in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, 13, 14 & 15 September 2017


Dear Members
Please follow the link to the latest quarterly newsletter. Stories and articles are always welcome. Please email Paul Couto at for enquiries.

Download the PDF version:  pdf 2016 11 16 SANIRE Newsletter Volume 2 Issue 4
(12.12 MB)
Download the ePub version: default 2016 11 16 SANIRE Newsletter Volume 2 Issue 4 (109.66 MB)


At the SANIRE AGM held in August we shared some of the history of the pass rates achieved for the various papers of the Rock Mechanics Certificates. The pass rate being relatively low is, however, dependent on the candidates being experienced enough to understand the study material and knowing how to apply it in actual case studies or work situations. For most candidates, obtaining a Rock Mechanics Certificate is a true journey, comprised of highs and lows. There is no greater feeling of disappointment when you know that you have put in a lot of effort, yet you still fail a subject. I can recall the accomplishment I experienced when I “eventually” passed my ticket. We always hear our mentors and managers saying that we need to keep on trying; perhaps the next paper is your paper. Looking back, I can now also echo these words. Through your personal journey to obtain the qualification, you will also reach a point in your career when you will look back and realise that you only passed the ticket when you were prepared technically and had obtained sufficient experience to understand and apply the knowledge you had gained over the years. In South Africa we have achieved more than 100 qualified Rock Engineers in the past 5 years. Success is dependent on each person’s ability and effort. “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts” (Winston Churchill).

The SANIRE AGM was hosted on the 9th September 2016 at Ruimsig Country Club, whereby the following awards were handed over to deserving members of SANIRE. The day was enjoyed by all who attended.

Full Name: Michael du Plessis

Company: Lonmin Platinum

Designation: Group Rock Engineering Manager

Qualifications: B.Sc., AREC, GDE, M.Eng., Ph.D.


Michael joined Anglo American Platinum in 2002 after graduating from RAU (now University of Johannesburg). He obtained his Rock Mechanics Certificate in 2005. From 2005 to 2007, Michael worked for Minova, servicing the mines, especially along the eastern limb of the Bushveld. In 2007 Michael joined Lonmin Platinum. He was appointed as the Group Rock Engineering Manager in 2009. He obtained his Master’s degree from the University of the Witwatersrand in 2009 and a Doctorate from the University of Pretoria in 2016.

SANIRE Free State Branch hosted there annual 2016 Year End Function at Goldfields Game Farm in Virginia on the 28th October 2016. the function started at 10:00 in the morning and included the members families. The families enjoyed a game drive, predator camp, swimming pool and kids play area with a jumping castle. A delicious spit braai was served for lunch while listening to a local live band. The day was enjoyed by all and was a huge success.

Recent developments

  • Rock Mechanics Principles, a video course by Prof. Jian Zhao. Available from the website.
  • ISRM Suggested Methods on video.
  • ISRM sponsored an investigation of the Nepal earthquake, chaired by VP He Manchao from China.

Board and Council meetings

The ISRM held its 2016 Council meeting in Ürgüp, Turkey, on 28 August, in conjunction with the EUROCK 2016, organised by the Turkish ISRM National Group. Out of the 60 National Groups, 49 were either present or represented. The Council was also attended by Past President Prof. Shunsuke Sakurai, Chairmen of several ISRM Commissions and a representative of the IAEG. Michael du Plessis represented South Africa and Omberai Mandingaisa represented Zimbabwe. William Joughin represented Tunisia on behalf of Essaieb Hamdi.

The ISRM board meeting was held on the 27th August and William Joughin represented the African region.

RangasamyFull Name: Trevor Rangasamy

Position: Director & Principal Rock Engineer

Company/Organisations: Middindi Consulting (Pty) Ltd (RSA), Middindi International Ltd, Rangkom Investments (Pty) Ltd

Date and Place of Birth: 11 September (911), Durban

Education: MSc (Eng), BSc (App Geology), AREC, COM Cert, SC Cert, G.D.E (Wits)

First Job: Assistant Strata Control Officer, Vaal Reefs Mining & Exploration Company

Personal Best Achievement/s: First Black COM Cert Rock Engineer in RSA, Starting Middindi Consulting (Pty) Ltd, making informed decisions whilst working on mines that saved lives

Philosophy of Life: Hard work never killed anyone ….

Favourite Food/Drink: A nice Durban bunny chow and Granadilla Twist

Favourite Sport: Cricket