Geosciences Journal

, Volume 20, Issue 4, pp 539–549 | Cite as

Numerical analysis on scale effect of elasticity, strength and failure patterns of jointed rock masses

  • Peitao Wang
  • Tianhong Yang
  • Tao Xu
  • Meifeng Cai
  • Changhong Li


It is of great importance to study the failure process and scale effect of jointed rock mass in the field of rock mechanics and mining engineering. In the present paper, initially the uniaxial compression test on granite was performed and acoustic emission (AE) sequence was acquired during the compression process in laboratory. Results from numerical simulations using the particle flow code in two dimensions (PFC2D) were presented, and compared with experimental measurements. It was observed that the approach was reasonably good in predicting the real response of granite rock samples. The mechanical parameter of joint model was then calibrated based on PFC2D model with experimental results. Finally the mechanical properties of complex rocks with discrete fracture network (DFN) were studied and scale effects on the elasticity and strength were then investigated. The result showed that the failure pattern was similar when the ratio of joint contact bond strength (both shear and normal) to rock contact bond strength was in the range of 3~9%. The elastic modulus and strength parameters were changed with the sizes of rock sample for DFN models. Moreover, the variation of rock failure pattern under different sizes was also studied and finally the representative elementary volume (REV) size of the considered rock mass was estimated to be 9 × 9 m. It is suggested that the failure pattern analysis should be considered in the REV study of jointed rock mass.


jointed rock mass scale effect representative elementary volume failure pattern particle flow code 


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Copyright information

© The Association of Korean Geoscience Societies and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peitao Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tianhong Yang
    • 3
  • Tao Xu
    • 3
  • Meifeng Cai
    • 1
  • Changhong Li
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Civil and Environmental EngineeringUniversity of Science and Technology BeijingBeijingChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of High-Efficient Mining and Safety of Metal Mines (Ministry of Education of China)University of Science and Technology BeijingBeijingChina
  3. 3.School of Resources and Civil EngineeringNortheastern UniversityShenyangChina

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