Couple stresses and the fracture of rock

Colin Atkinson, Ciprian D. Coman, Javier Aldazabal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


An assessment is made here of the role played by the micropolar continuum theory on the cracked Brazilian disc test used for determining rock fracture toughness. By analytically solving the corresponding mixed boundary-value problems and employing singular-perturbation arguments, we provide closedform expressions for the energy release rate and the corresponding stress-intensity factors for both mode I and mode II loading. These theoretical results are augmented by a set of fracture toughness experiments on both sandstone and marble rocks. It is further shown that the morphology of the fracturing process in our centrally pre-cracked circular samples correlates very well with discrete element simulations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20140120
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
Issue number2038
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes


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