Evaluating the corollary of the interdependency of rock joint properties on subsurface fracturing
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AbstractThe characteristics of structural discontinuities in the subsurface environment often play a key role in the overall behaviour of such systems and their response to externally imposed conditions. Rock joints are one of such features that constitute the heterogeneity of rock masses. Akin to other forms of discontinuities, the characteristics of rock joints affect the performance of their parent rock masses, which are constituents of rock formations. The fracturing process is one of such key geo-mechanical phenomena that is inevitably influenced by pre-existing joints. A numerical technique implemented via a discrete element method (DEM) is herein adopted to evaluate two fundamental properties that control the shear and dilatancy responses of discontinuities. Though these properties are also assessed in isolation, their interdependency, which is a dominant factor, is investigated. As joint frictional resistance increases, it escalates the potential of the joint to attenuate the rate of fracture growth. On the other hand, an increase in joint dilatancy increases the intensity of fracturing. The impact of joint frictional resistance is more pronounced at high friction magnitudes, and in this range, the predominant influence of joint friction overwhelms any effect of joint dilatancy. Contrarily, at low joint frictional resistance, contributions from even a small magnitude of joint dilatancy increases the degree of fracturing. The inter-relationship between joint friction and dilatancy has influencing implications that govern the performance of rock masses. An inquiry into their combined contributions provides information prerequisite for a more accurate estimation and appraisal of fracture behaviour in underground systems.
CitationEshiet, K.I.I., Sheng, Y. & Yang, D. (2020) Evaluating the corollary of the interdependency of rock joint properties on subsurface fracturing. Bulletin of Engineering Geology and the Environment (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10064-020-01933-5
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media LLC
JournalBulletin of Engineering Geology and the Environment
DescriptionThis is an accepted manuscript of an article published by Springer in Bulletin of Engineering Geology and the Environment on 14/08/2020, available online: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10064-020-01933-5 The accepted version of the publication may differ from the final published version.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/