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Evaluating the Response of a Tunnel Subjected to Strike-Slip Fault Rupture in Conjunction with Model Test and Hybrid Discrete–Continuous Numerical Modeling

Abstract

The current paper evaluates the response of a tunnel subjected to strike-slip fault rupture with experimental and numerical approaches. Some state-of-art techniques were adopted in the analysis. A new formula containing sodium silicate was used for the similar material. Endoscope technique was used in the model test to log the crack propagating inside the tunnel. And hybrid discrete–continuous modeling was introduced to perform a sophisticated numerical investigation. Two small-scale model tests were carried out, in which the interaction of the tunnel with the fault rupture, the deformation pattern, and the strain evolution and crack propagation in the tunnel liner were observed. The model tests indicate that the failure of the tunnel mainly resulted by the faulting-induced circular cracks concentrated in the vicinity of the shear zone and longitudinal cracks at the passive side portion. Then, the hybrid DEM-FDM model was constructed and calibrated based on the experimental data, with which the response and mechanism of the tunnel subjected to strike-slip fault rupture were numerically investigated to identify the influences of some important factors. The longitudinal and transverse deformation profiles of the tunnel were found to be dominated by the rock mass condition and the buried depth of the tunnel. And the tunnel’s design factors have significant effects on the stress and failure mode of the liner. For a soft or thin tunnel liner, the failure zones were more concentrated. The tunnel would fail in a ‘shear’ mode. In contrast, for a hard or thick liner, the magnitude of the tensile strain is less, yet the tension failure area is larger. The tunnel would fail in a ‘squeeze’ mode. Based on the obtained results, suggestions on the design of tunnel liner against the strike-slip fault rupture were proposed.

Highlights

  • A discrete-continuous hybrid numerical model was constructed to analyze a tunnel subjected to strike-slip fault rupture.

  • The hybrid discrete-continuous numerical model was calibrated based on especially designed model tests.

  • In model tests, the progressive crack propagating inside the tunnel liner was logged with an endoscope technique.

  • A detailed parametric study was performed for a tunnel subjected to a strike-slip fault rupture.

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Abbreviations

DEM:

Discrete element method

FEM:

Finite element method

FDM:

Finite difference method

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Acknowledgements

This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (nos. U21A20159, 52079133, 51779253, 41902288), CRSRI Open Research Program (Program SN: CKWV2019746/KY), MOE Key Lab of Disaster Forecast and Control in Engineering, Jinan University (no. 20200904002), and the Youth Innovation Promotion Association CAS.

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Correspondence to Cui Zhen.

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Zhen, C., Jian-he, L., Xing-wei, F. et al. Evaluating the Response of a Tunnel Subjected to Strike-Slip Fault Rupture in Conjunction with Model Test and Hybrid Discrete–Continuous Numerical Modeling. Rock Mech Rock Eng (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00603-022-02900-0

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00603-022-02900-0

Keywords

  • Fault rupture
  • Strike-slip fault
  • Similar model test
  • Hybrid numerical analysis
  • Rock tunnel