Comprehensive Model for Rock Discontinuities

by William J. Roberds, (A.M.ASCE), Grad. Research Asst.; Massachusetts Inst. of Tech., Cambridge, Mass.,
Herbert H. Einstein, (M.ASCE), Assoc. Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Massachusetts Inst. of Tech., Cambridge, Mass.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Geotechnical Engineering Division, 1978, Vol. 104, Issue 5, Pg. 553-569

Document Type: Journal Paper


The full understanding and analytical modeling of rock discontinuity behavior requires a comprehensive model that can describe the entire history leading to the present state of the discontinuity as well as subsequent changes of this state. The comprehensive model presented in this paper is based on a general purpose elastic viscoplastic critical state model that can be applied to most materials used in civil engineering. In a newly developed stress-strain-time space, the entire stress-strain history, including time-related effects like creep and consolidation, can be represented. The concept of the critical state makes a complete description of post-yield behavior possible which is of particular importance for rock discontinuities. The powerful capabilities of the comprehensive model are demonstrated by performing the required full description of rock discontinuity behavior. A comparison with the best known rock discontinuity models shows both the versatility of the comprehensive model and the possible inadequacies of these previous models.

Subject Headings: Rocks | Discontinuities | Material properties | Stress strain relations | History | Elastic analysis | Space exploration | Stress history

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