Dominant micro-cracking direction and anisotropic property of rocks under uniaxial compression

  • Maiyong JiangEmail author
  • Guan Rong
  • Jun Peng
  • Yi Li
  • Shunli Zhao
Original Article


To explore the relationship between the dominant direction of micro-cracks and the anisotropy, this research focuses on the micro-crack initiation and propagation mechanism and the anisotropic parameters evolution in the rock under uniaxial compression. Based on the maximum circumferential stress theory and the assumption of shear slip leading to the local tensile stress, the micro-crack initiation and propagation model is established, and the anisotropic parameters of rock is further explored. To verify the theory, the marble limestone, granite porphyry and granite are selected to conduct uniaxial compression experiment. It is indicated that the experimental results of elastic moduli and Poisson’s ratio are well consistent with theoretical analysis. Finally, the relationship between the dominant direction of original and secondary micro-cracks and the effect of the micro-cracks’ dominant direction on practical engineering are discussed. The results show that the dominant direction of micro-cracks is parallel to the maximum principal stress under uniaxial compression, which leads to the anisotropy of rock. With the increase of stress, the axial and transverse elastic moduli would decrease, while the extent of the decrease of axial elastic modulus is larger. The axial Poisson’s ratio would increase and the transverse Poisson’s ratio will decrease. Moreover, the Poisson’s ratio is more sensitive to the anisotropy caused by the dominant direction of micro-cracks.


Rock Uniaxial compression Micro-crack Dominant propagation direction Anisotropy evolution 



The financial supports from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No.51509022); Scientific research project of Hunan Provincial Department of Education (No.15C0893); Hunan water conservancy science and technology project (No. [2017]230-4 and [2016]194-7).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maiyong Jiang
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Guan Rong
    • 2
  • Jun Peng
    • 2
  • Yi Li
    • 3
  • Shunli Zhao
    • 4
  1. 1.Hunan Polytechnic of Water Resources and Electric PowerChangshaChina
  2. 2.School of Water Resources and Hydropower EngineeringWuhan UniversityWuhanChina
  3. 3.School of Hydraulic EngineeringChangsha University of Science and TechnologyChangshaChina
  4. 4.School of Resource and Environment EngineeringWuhan University of TechnologyWuhanChina

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