Fractures control the hydro-mechanical behavior of rock masses. Explicit numerical analyses require detailed information on fracture properties, spacing, and orientation. This paper advances an implicit joint-continuum model for the coupled hydro-mechanical analysis of regularly spaced-persistent fractured rock masses. The stiffness tensor combines the compliance of each fracture set and the intact rock; similarly, the permeability tensor adds the fluid transport through fractures and the matrix. The fully coupled hydro-mechanical analysis incorporates the rock mass stiffness and permeability tensors, and satisfies force equilibrium and macroscopic fluid mass balance. We implement the implicit joint-continuum model within a finite element framework and verify the numerical simulator against closed-form solutions for simple boundary conditions. The application of the code to the hydraulic stimulation of a fractured rock mass shows the effect of stress anisotropy and fracture orientation on the development of open-mode discontinuities (i.e., hydraulic fracture) and hydro-shearing. The implicit joint-continuum model can be readily extended to more complex coupled processes, including thermal and chemical phenomena.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences|
|State||Published - May 15 2019|