I find recent calls for Benni McCarthy and Siyabonga 'Bhele' Nomvethe to be part of the national football team again, quite interesting. Their recent performance records at Orlando Pirates and Morocco Swallows have shown their spectacular abilities. McCarthy's goal, a classic overhead kick, against Maritzburg United in the PSL recently tells you that the old dog still has vooma. In my opinion, he is still South Africa's most lethal striker in the 18-yard area. Veteran striker Nomvethe continues to run circles around younger players and penetrate defence lines with the same alertness and pace he possessed ten years ago.
Esorfranki Geotechnical has successfully completed one of the biggest micro-piling projects ever conducted in South Africa. The R38.3 million contract was awarded by the Eastern Cape Department of Roads and Public Works in February 2011 and called for the stabilising of a retaining wall on the road between Ncembu Plateau and Langeni Sawmill, some 50 km outside of Mthatha.
The winner of SAICE's Geotechnical Gold Medal for 2011 has an overriding mission in life: to produce, in South Africa, geotechnical engineers of a quality and quantity that can compete with and also surpass the best of their breed in the world. With consummate keenness, Prof Eben Rust (Geotechnical Engineering) of the University of Pretoria and owner of Osimo cc, has throughout his professional career applied his varied talents to achieve this goal.
In the April 2011 edition of the SAICE magazine (Civil Engineering April 2011 p 46) we reported on the successful funding application that the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Pretoria (UP) had made to the National Research Foundation for a geotechnical centrifuge. Now, one year later, we are pleased to report that the geotechnical centrifuge has been delivered, installed and commissioned in the civil engineering laboratories at UP, or TUKS, as the university is popularly known.
Introducing modern technologies into an existing market can be a challenge, but most would agree that the recipe for success must bring together simplicity, technical performance, time savings, high safety and quality standards, and cost savings. Pursuing these goals, piling contractor GeoPile Africa (Pty) Ltd has sourced and introduced into the local market the DUKTUS ductile cast iron pile system under an exclusive licence agreement.
The extensive Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP) comprises road widening and the upgrading of several interchanges to improve the transport infrastructure in Gauteng and reduce traffic congestion. This article covers the stabilisation of the cuttings over a stretch of the N12 near Alberton.
In 2010 the University of Cape Town (UCT) embarked on a three-year capital expenditure programme valued at nearly R1 billion. A considerable component of this expenditure programme was the construction of the New Engineering Building (NEB), on the slopes of Devil's Peak, which commenced in January 2011. The NEB was to replace the structure housing the Civil Engineering Department laboratories. This project required a multi-staged demolition of the structure, in conjunction with the initiation of construction. Furthermore, extensive bulk excavations were required in order to accommodate the proposed basement level of the NEB earmarked for the new Civil Engineering Department laboratories.
The government of Botswana in recent years has undertaken major dam construction to address the rapidly growing demand for water. This culminated in the construction of three major dams with a combined capacity of about 530 million m3, almost doubling existing surface water capacity to 939 million m3. Construction of the Dikgatlhong Dam commenced in March 2008, followed by the Lotsane Dam in April 2009 and the Thune Dam in April 2010. Dikgatlhong and Lotsane Dams are substantially complete. Dikgatlhong is the largest dam in Botswana with an active capacity of 400 million m3, while the Thune Dam, which is still under construction, will be the fourth largest dam, with a full supply capacity of 90 million m3 upon completion. During excavation of the cut-off trench, potholes were encountered. The occurrence, intensity and size of these potholes puzzled many, and various theories were postulated on the origins of these potholes.
Aquarius Platinum South Africa (AQPSA) is planning the expansion of their Everest Platinum Mine located approximately 30 km west of Lydenburg in Mpumalanga. The proposed expansion will include the addition of two new decline box-cuts, a tailings storage facility and a new road connecting this infrastructure. This extension of the infrastructure will provide access to additional ore-body that will increase the life of the mine.
ARQ Consulting was responsible for conducting and supervising the geotechnical fieldwork, the interpretation of results and several analyses, including finite element analyses, in order to produce detailed designs for certain components of the proposed surface infrastructure.
South African mining companies are becoming increasingly involved in operations throughout the world, particularly in other parts of Africa, while international mining companies are extending their operations into South Africa. South African mining and construction companies have therefore become subject to international standards for the planning, design, construction, operation and closure of mine residue storage facilities. Often the standards imposed in jurisdictions such as Canada, Australia, the USA and European countries differ from those that have commonly been applied in South Africa. As regulators and the public worldwide pay increasing attention to sustainability, environmental, health and safety issues, the international standards themselves are becoming far more onerous on the owner, designer and operator of these facilities than has previously been the case.
GIGSA, the Geosynthetics Interest Group of South Africa, is a non-profit organisation dedicated to the scientific and engineering development of geosynthetics and associated technologies in South Africa.
GIGSA was founded in 1994 by a group of suppliers, installers, consultants, a regulator and an academic at the Faculty of Engineering of the University of the Witwatersrand. The founding of GIGSA coincided with the publication of the first edition of the Minimum Requirements series by the then Department of Water Affairs and Forestry. The intention of the Minimum Requirements was to regulate waste management as a whole, but also waste disposal by landfill in South Africa, which made the use of geomembranes mandatory. This reinforced the need for an organisation like GIGSA, as geosynthetics were largely unknown construction materials at that time.
An attempt to prevent strong winds from ripping cladding off buildings is discussed. A procedure for testing the resistance of sheeting to wind forces, developed by the South African Railways and applied to various large buildings, is descriptionbed. The assessment of test loads, used to simulate the wind forces, is also dealt with.
The processing of most mined metal ores results in waste commonly known as tailings. The sheer volume of tailings and their potential environmental impact necessitate engineered disposal techniques and storage facilities. The dam walls for third and fourth generation type facilities are constructed using the tailings themselves for cost effectiveness. These facilities can follow three main construction methods, namely upstream, centreline or downstream development of the walls. Irrespective of the construction technique utilised, the principle is to create a consolidated stable outer annulus to contain the inner saturated, often under-consolidated, core. Creating the consolidated outer annulus is facilitated by the inclusion of filter drains - often called under drains - around the perimeter to draw down and control the phreatic surface emanating from the flow or seepage of pore water from the saturated core. Apart from the aesthetic aspects and their impact on the environment, tailings dams are often extensive in area, sterilising valuable land. Consequently, it is becoming increasingly difficult to license new tailings storage facilities (TSFs).