Micro-macro mechanics of damage and healing in rocks

Arson, Chloé

This paper presents the state of the art of the theory of rock damage and healing mechanics, with a particular emphasis on the strategies available to relate the micro-scale of crystals, cracks and pores to the scale of a Representative Elementary Volume (REV). We focus on mechanical degradation and recovery of stiffness and strength. Damage and healing models formulated in the author’s group are used as examples to illustrate and compare the reviewed micro-macro approaches, which include fabric enrichment, micromechanical formulations and homogenization schemes. This manuscript was written for doctoral students or researchers relatively new to the field of damage mechanics of geomaterials. Equations are provided to explain how to formulate a thermodynamically consistent model from scratch. Reviewing damage and healing modeling strategies led to the following conclusions: (i) The framework of hyperplasticity, which does not require any postulate on the existence or uniqueness of yield functions and which automatically ensures thermodynamic consistency, was never applied to Continuum Damage Mechanics (CDM). There may be an avenue to improve state-of-the-art damage and healing models in a similar framework of “hyper-damage mechanics”. (ii) In damage softening models, the mesh dependence of the width of the damage localization zone is currently alleviated by non-local regularization. Perhaps the next step is to couple micro-macro damage and healing models at the REV scale to discrete fracture mechanics at a larger scale to understand how damage and healing localization occurs. (iii) There may be an opportunity to use fabric-enriched models to capture the effect of microstructure organization on both mechanical properties and permeability. (iv) Coupling chemo-mechanical damage and healing processes across the scales would be useful to model the competition between damagre and healing whenever both can occur at the same temperature and pressure conditions. (v) Many challenges still exist to implement healing models in the Finite Element Method, especially in regards to the mapping of net damage.

Published: 2020-02-04

Comparative performance of some constitutive models in stress rotation

Schranz, Fabian; Fellin, Wolfgang; Kolymbas, Dimitrios

The dilatancy/contractancy of soil is of particular importance for compaction, consolidation, liquefaction, etc. Interestingly, constitutive relations are often unsatisfactory in modelling volume changes in the sense that their predictions deviate considerably from each other. This scatter is pronounced in problems with stress rotation. Therefore, in this paper some selected constitutive relations are investigated with respect to their performance at stress rotation. The obtained numerical simulations are compared with each other and also with experimental results from the 1γ2ε and the hollow cylinder apparatuses.

Published: 2019-11-25

Frictional Plasticity in a Convex Analytical Setting

Houlsby, Guy T.

A very simple frictional plasticity model for a granular material is presented, including the effects of dilation. The novelty lies in the fact that this is described within the hyperplasticity framework, expressed using the terminology of convex analysis. This allows a consistent mathematical treatment of the dilation constraint. The Fenchel Dual is used to link the force and flow potentials. The resulting model accommodates non-associated flow within a rigorous mathematical framework that ensures compliance with the Laws of Thermodynamics.

Published: 2019-09-12

Proppant-Induced Opening of Hydraulically Created Fractures

Selvadurai, A.P.S.

The paper examines the problem of the open configuration created when a hydraulic fracture fluid containing a granular proppant is introduced into the fracture. The mathematical modelling examines the problem of an extended cracked region that is wedged open by a granular material present over a finite region of the crack. The combination of the geostatic stress state and the contact stress created between the granular proppant and the elastic rock mass is used to develop a consistency relationship for estimating the dimension of the region of the fracture that will remain open when the pressures applied to create the fracture are released. The interactive mechanics of the fracture and the proppant has an influence on the geometry of the open region that provides the pathway for extraction of the resource.

Published: 2019-07-22


Andò, Edward; Dijkstra, Jelke; Frost, David; Herle, Ivo; Hurley, Ryan; Marks, Benjy; Muir Wood, David; Tamagnini, Claudio; Viggiani, Cino

This Editorial is the first publication from the journal Open Geomechanics, a radically open-access scientific journal for Geomechanics Research, edited by Geomechanics researchers for Geomechanics researchers. We believe that the results of scientific research should be available to all. For this reason, this journal is committed to publishing high quality work within the remit of diamond open access — free to publish and read. Our aim is to become a recognised journal in the field of geomechanics, and a launchpad for new ideas for the dissemination of research in this field. Research manuscripts (in any geomechanics related topics such as analytical, numerical or experimental studies) or case studies, negative results, as well as replicability or reproducibility studies are welcome.

Published: 2019-01-28