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Open AccessArticle

Experimental Study on the Fracturing Behaviors and Mechanical Properties of Cracks under Coupled Hydro-Mechanical Effects in Rock-like Specimens

1
Department of Geotechnical Engineering, College of Civil Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China
2
College of Engineering, Tibet University, Lhasa 850011, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(10), 1355; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10101355
Received: 12 September 2018 / Revised: 26 September 2018 / Accepted: 27 September 2018 / Published: 29 September 2018
The artificial fracturing technique under coupled hydro-mechanical effects is widely used in many rock engineering. Therefore, the study on the fracturing behaviors and mechanical properties of hydro-mechanical coupled cracks is very crucial. In this study, a series of fracturing tests were conducted on the cylinder gypsum specimens with single pre-existing cracks using triaxial compression loading system. Water pressure was applied inside the pre-existing cracks and led to the specimen failure with external compression loading. A new type of cracks, namely horizontal coupled cracks (HCC), were found in some specimens. Macroscopic observations reveal that HCC, which were mainly caused by the hydraulic pressure, were different from any tensile wing cracks, shear secondary cracks, or shear anti-wing cracks. Subsequently, a microscopic study was performed using scanning electron microscope (SEM), the outcomes suggest that: (1) Shear fracturing zones (SFZ) and tensile fracturing zones (TFZ) under coupled hydro-mechanical effects displayed distinct characteristics on orientations, length, and independence of gypsum grains; and (2) the HCC were tensile cracks when they just initiated from outer tips of pre-existing cracks. While tensile stress made major contribution to the specimen failure during the whole fracturing processes, the HCC became tensile and shear mixed cracks when the specimen was about to fail. View Full-Text
Keywords: Coupled hydro-mechanical effect; triaxial compression loading test; microscopic observation; tensile and shear properties Coupled hydro-mechanical effect; triaxial compression loading test; microscopic observation; tensile and shear properties
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Zhou, Y.; Zhao, C.; Zhao, C.; Ma, C.; Xie, J. Experimental Study on the Fracturing Behaviors and Mechanical Properties of Cracks under Coupled Hydro-Mechanical Effects in Rock-like Specimens. Water 2018, 10, 1355.

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