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Geomechanics and Engineering
  Volume 15, Number 5, August10 2018 , pages 1047-1059

Crack initiation and fragmentation processes in pre-cracked rock-like materials
Jooeun Lee and Jung-Wuk Hong

    This paper focuses on the cracking and fragmentation process in rock materials containing a pair of non-parallel flaws, which are through the specimen thickness, under vertical compression. Several numerical experiments are conducted with varying flaw arrangements that affect the initiation and tensile wing cracks, shear crack growth, and crack coalescing behaviors. To obtain realistic numerical results, a parallelized peridynamics formulation coupled with a finite element method, which is able to capture arbitrarily occurring cracks, is employed. From previous studies, crack initiation and propagation of tensile wing cracks, horsetail cracks, and anti-wing cracks are well understood along with the coalescence between two parallel flaws. In this study, the coalescence behaviors, their fragmentation sequences, and the role of an x-shaped shear band in rock material containing two non-parallel flaws are discussed in detail on the basis of simulation results strongly correlated with previous experimental results. Firstly, crack initiation and propagation of tensile wing cracks and shear cracks between non-parallel flaws are investigated in time-history and then sequential coalescing behavior is analyzed. Secondly, under the effect of varying inclination angles of two non-parallel flaws and overlapping ratios between a pair of non-parallel flaws, the cracking patterns including crack coalescence, fragmentation, and x-shaped shear band are investigated. These numerical results, which are in good agreement with reported physical test results, are expected to provide insightful information of the fracture mechanism of rock with non-parallel flaws.
Key Words
    non-parallel flaws; progressive failure; crack coalescence; fragmentation; x-shaped shear band
Jooeun Lee and Jung-Wuk Hong: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Daejeon 34141, South Korea

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