Applicability of the theory of hollow inclusions for overcoring stress measurements in rock
Whenever solid or hollow inclusions are used as instrumented probes in overcoring techniques, “residual stresses” remain in the overcored rock sample and in the probes. When using such devices for computing the in-situ stress field components from measured strains or displacements, it is common practice to assume that the overcoring diameter is infinite and that there is a perfect bonding between the rock and the probes. The validity of these assumptions depends on the magnitude of the residual stresses at the rock-probe contact as compared to the tensile and shear strengths of the rock-probe bond material. It also depends on the distribution of residual stresses in the overcored sample.
In comparison to previous work, new expressions are proposed in this paper for the residual stresses associated with solid or hollow inclusion type stress probes in anisotropic ground. These expressions are presented in dimensionless form and are used to show that the distribution and magnitude of residual stresses depend on the isotropic-anisotropic rock character, the degree and type of rock anisotropy, the orientation of the rock anisotropy with respect to the hole in which the probes are located and the relative deformability of the rock with respect to the deformability of the material comprising the probes. The conditions that are required for neglecting the overcored sample diameter are also discussed. This is shown for rocks that can be described as isotropic, transversely isotropic and orthotropic materials.
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