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11.08.2015 | Original Paper | Ausgabe 3/2016

Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering 3/2016

Numerical Modeling of Jointed Rock Under Compressive Loading Using X-ray Computerized Tomography

Zeitschrift:
Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering > Ausgabe 3/2016
Autoren:
Qinglei Yu, Shengqi Yang, P. G. Ranjith, Wancheng Zhu, Tianhong Yang

Abstract

As jointed rocks consist of joints embedded within intact rock blocks, the presence and geometrical fabric of joints have a great influence on the mechanical behavior of rock. With consideration of the actual spatial shape of joints, a numerical model is proposed to investigate the fracture evolution mechanism of jointed rocks. In the proposed model, computerized tomography (CT) scanning is first used to capture the microstructure of a jointed sandstone specimen, which is artificially fabricated by loading the intact sample until the residual strength, and then digital image processing (DIP) techniques are applied to characterize the geometrical fabric of joints from the CT images. A simple vectorization method is used to convert the microstructure based on a cross-sectional image into a layer of 3-D vectorized microstructure and the overall 3-D model of the jointed sandstone including the real spatial shape of the joints is established by stacking the layers in a specific sequence. The 3-D model is then integrated into a well-established code [three-dimensional Rock Failure Process Analysis, (RFPA3D)]. Using the proposed model, a uniaxial compression test of the jointed sandstone is simulated. The results show that the presence of joints can produce tensile stress zones surrounding them, which result in the fracture of jointed rocks under a relatively small external load. In addition, the spatial shape of the joints has a great influence on the fracture process of jointed rocks.

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