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Evaluation of an Ultrasonic Method for Damage Characterization of Brittle Rocks

  • Deepanshu ShiroleEmail author
  • Ahmadreza Hedayat
  • Ehsan Ghazanfari
  • Gabriel Walton
Original Paper
  • 256 Downloads

Abstract

An intact rock specimen, when subjected to uniaxial compression, experiences multiple stages of deformation. This begins with the nucleation of microcracks at low stresses (crack initiation—CI) and their subsequent transition into unstable crack propagation (crack damage—CD) close to the ultimate strength. In the present study, an active ultrasonic monitoring method was used during uniaxial compression testing of Lyons sandstone specimens to evaluate the potential of the technique for damage characterization. The sensitivity of ultrasonic monitoring in relation to the input excitation frequency was also analyzed using four ultrasonic transducers with different central frequencies. A LabVIEW-controlled active ultrasonic system was used to acquire active seismic waveforms, which were made to propagate perpendicular to the direction of uniaxial stress. With increasing deformation, the corresponding changes in amplitude, frequency, and velocity of the active seismic signals were analyzed to characterize the CI and CD stress thresholds. Using statistical analysis, it was concluded that the changes in the amplitude and frequency of the active signals could be potential indicators of CI and CD. The comparison of wave characteristics corresponding to different input excitations also indicated that appropriate selection of transducer frequency is crucial for a representative interpretation of damage processes.

Keywords

Crack initiation Crack damage Brittle rock Ultrasonic Amplitude Frequency 

Abbreviations

AE

Acoustic emissions

ANOVA

Analysis of variance

CD

Crack damage

CEx

Circumferential extensometer

CI

Crack initiation

CI-CEx

Crack initiation calculated from circumferential extensometer

CI-SG

Crack initiation calculated from strain gauge

CT

Computed tomography

DD

Displacement discontinuity

FFT

Fast Fourier transform

LSR

Lateral strain response

LVDT

Linear variable differential transformer

NI

National instrument

SCD

Seismic crack damage

SCD-A

Seismic crack damage calculated from amplitude

SCD-F

Seismic crack damage calculated from frequency

SCD-V

Seismic crack damage calculated from velocity

SCI

Seismic crack initiation

SCI-A

Seismic crack initiation calculated from amplitude

SCI-F

Seismic crack initiation calculated from frequency

SCI-V

Seismic crack initiation calculated from velocity

SG

Strain gauge

UCS

Uniaxial compressive strength

V

Volts

μɛ

Micron-strain

μs

Micron-seconds

ωc

Characteristic frequency

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Mr. Amin Gheibi for assisting in performing the laboratory experiments. The support provided by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1644326 is greatly appreciated. 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringColorado School of MinesGoldenUSA
  2. 2.College of Engineering and Mathematical SciencesUniversity of VermontBurlingtonUSA
  3. 3.Department of Geology and Geological EngineeringColorado School of MinesGoldenUSA

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