Size-dependent behaviour of hard rock under triaxial loading
UNIVERSAL IDENTIFIER: http://hdl.handle.net/11093/4880
EDITED VERSION: https://link.springer.com/10.1007/s00603-023-03367-3
DOCUMENT TYPE: article
Understanding size effects is important to rigorously analyse the behaviour of rocks and rock masses at different scales and for different applications. A number of empirical and numerical studies have included size effects on the uniaxial compressive strength of different rocks, but only few have focussed on the triaxial compressive strength. In this study, several triaxial tests were conducted on granite samples at different confinements (from 0.2 to 15 MPa) and sizes (from 30 to 84 mm in diameter). The most relevant strength parameters were recovered including peak and residual strengths, orientation and frictional response of shear bands. Size effects were observed to be less dominant at high confining pressures for both peak and residual strengths. The resulting data were analysed in the context of size-dependent rock strength theories. For peak strength analyses, the unified size effect law (USEL) and the improved unified size law (IUSEL) were used, in which the double trends, ascending descending behaviours were observed. Size-dependent Hoek–Brown modified failure criteria based on USEL and IUSEL were fit to peak strengths exhibiting a good agreement between the models and the laboratory data. The brittle-ductile transition and the frictional behaviour of shear band under triaxial loading were also analysed. A clear brittle behaviour was particularly observed in samples with large-diameters tested at low confinements. Finally, in regards to frictional behaviour, the shear band angle found to be affected by both confinement and sample size.
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