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Micromechanics approach to poroelastic behavior of a jointed rock


S. Maghous, Department of Civil Engineering, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.



The formulation of macroscopic poroelastic behavior of a jointed rock is investigated within the framework of a micro–macro approach. The joints are modeled as interfaces, and their behavior is modeled by means of generalized poroelastic state equations. Starting from Hill's lemma extended for a jointed medium and extending the concept of strain concentration to relate the joint displacement jump to macroscopic strain, the overall poroelastic constitutive equations for the jointed rock are formulated. The analysis emphasizes the main differences and similarities of the resulting behavior with respect to that characterizing ordinary porous media. It is shown that, unlike ordinary porous media, conditions on the poroelastic parameters of joints are required for the macroscopic drained stiffness to entirely define the poroelastic behavior. This is achieved, for instance, if the joint network is characterized by a unique Biot coefficient. Extension of the analysis to non-linear poroelasticity is also outlined. Finally, the theoretical formulation is applied to two particular cases of jointed rock for which explicit expressions of the overall poroelastic parameters are derived. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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