Dr. Michael du Plessis has approximately 20 years’ experience in Rock Mechanics post him graduating with a Bachelors degree. He obtained a PhD in 2016 and was awarded the prestigious ISRM Rocha medal in 2018. Michael has worked for the major Platinum and Gold mining companies of South Africa. This is where he continuous to make significant contributions towards safety, design practices, new technologies and leading practices. Michael is privileged to manage the Rock Engineering function on active mining operations. This enables him to apply a hands-on R&D approach relating to a wide range of Rock Engineering challenges experienced across industry. Dr. du Plessis is also actively involved with the University of Pretoria situated in South Africa where he conducts industry related research alongside professors Francois Malan and John Napier. He continues to publish new and insightful research findings which greatly contribute to the broader Rock Mechanics industry.
Michael is a Past President of the South African Institute of Rock Engineering (SANIRE) and remains on the council to contribute to the greater South African Rock Engineering community. Michael is active in various local and international commissions and energizes most of the prominent areas of research in South Africa. He personally oversees the development of many junior and developing Rock Engineers. This uplifts and promotes the participation of these candidates in post-graduate studies, to write papers, attend and brand themselves at various meetings and symposia.
Dr. Michael du Plessis is the current ISRM Vice President for Africa. He intends to apply the successes of the various areas of excellence achieved by their national group to the greater ISRM community to promote further ISRM growth and the group activity in the Africa.