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Processes 2019, 7(3), 162; https://doi.org/10.3390/pr7030162

DEM Investigation of the Influence of Minerals on Crack Patterns and Mechanical Properties of Red Mudstone

State Key Laboratory of Coal Resources and Safe Mining, School of Mines, China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou 221116, China
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Received: 27 December 2018 / Revised: 1 March 2019 / Accepted: 2 March 2019 / Published: 15 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fluid Flow in Fractured Porous Media)

Abstract

Rocks are natural heterogeneous materials. It is common for a rock to have several kinds of minerals, which will have a significant effect on its mechanical behavior. The purpose of the numerical simulation study in this paper is to explore the effects of minerals on the crack patterns and mechanical properties of rocks. First, the corresponding calculation model is established by using the discrete element method (DEM), whereby the mechanical parameters of the blocks and joints in the Tyson polygon procedure are fitted with the rock properties obtained in the laboratory. Then, various combination models of different mineral sizes and ratios are established to study the effects of mineral size, position, and ratio on the fracture distribution and mechanical properties of rock samples. The results indicate that with increased circle size of the center mineral and the mineral ratio, the elastic modulus and uniaxial compression strength (UCS) of the model gradually increase. The drop degree of post-peak stress decreases, and the integrity and bearing capacity increase. It is found that there is a quartic polynomial relationship between elastic modulus and mineral circle radius, with R2 ≥ 0.94. The minerals located in the crack propagation path will effectively block the crack and change the propagation direction. When the mineral position is close to the model boundaries, especially the lateral boundaries, it has a significant influence on the crack initiation position, causing crack initiation to occur at the upper boundary of the mineral circle and propagate to the middle of the model. With increased mineral percentage and small-size mineral circle proportion, the depth of extension of the crack from boundary to center is reduced, the crack has wide development in the boundary area, the number of central cracks in the rock specimen decreases, and the degree of fragmentation decreases. View Full-Text
Keywords: minerals; mechanical properties; uniaxial compressive strength; crack distribution characteristics; discrete element method minerals; mechanical properties; uniaxial compressive strength; crack distribution characteristics; discrete element method
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Zhang, S.; Zhang, D.; Zhao, Q.; Chi, M.; Zhang, W.; Yu, W. DEM Investigation of the Influence of Minerals on Crack Patterns and Mechanical Properties of Red Mudstone. Processes 2019, 7, 162.

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