Rock conference looks at pore pressure, scale effects, and deformation



The mechanical behavior and physical properties of commonly anisotropic, cracked, and porous rocks are of importance in the oil industry contaminant transport, and seismic hazard evaluations. About 70 researchers gathered last fall to discuss recent advances as well as shortcomings in our understanding of rock physics and rock mechanics, with scientists from both communities sharing their knowledge to explain geological observations.

Field and laboratory data were juxtaposed with models to highlight the nature of pore pressure regimes and their influence on the deformation of rocks. The range of scales that exist in geology, from plate tectonics to fault breccias, demands that macroscopic geomechanical concepts and laws are related to microscopic processes. Much of the meeting was dedicated to that large topic: bringing macroscopic observations to an understanding of the microscopic process.