University of Cambridge > > Engineering Department Geotechnical Research Seminars > Deformation and failure processes in geologic materials at scales from grains to basins.

Deformation and failure processes in geologic materials at scales from grains to basins.

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  • UserProf Ronaldo Borja, Dept of Civil & Environmental Engineering,Stanford University
  • ClockFriday 29 February 2008, 16:30-17:30
  • HouseEngineering Department - LR6.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Zelda Stuck.

Sediments and sedimentary rocks display a wide range of deformation and failure processes and structural styles that reflect their porous and granular nature, variable loading conditions and loading rates in active depositional settings, and complex chemical/mechanical water-sediment-rock interactions. A basic understanding of these multiscale deformation and failure processes is a prerequisite for successful energy and water resource management and natural hazard mitigation. In keeping with this year’s IAS theme of “multiscale modeling,” my seminar will cover some of the engineering and geoscience research activities conducted at Stanford University focusing on theoretical, numerical and computational aspects of deformation and failure processes in sediments and rocks across a wide range of scales. “Multiscale” in the present context refers to the physical scale of the problem of interest, which may range from granular scale controlling the behavior of small sediment samples tested in the laboratory, to basin scale encountered in the simulation of faulting and folding of rocks, as well as in the studies of mountain building. I will present some advanced numerical techniques that my group uses to model the complex deformation and failure processes from micron-scale to kilometer-scale. An example includes preserving the numerical resolution of a centimeter-scale rock fracture superimposed over a kilometer-scale rock fold.

Micron-scale description: Microtomographic image of the solid phase of a Castlegate sandstone. Image resolution is 3.34 microns. Image volume is 1.4 cubic millimeters. Reproduced from White, Borja and Fredrich, Acta Geotechnica (2006).

Kilometer-scale description: Aerial view of Sheep Mountain Anticline, Wyoming, USA , looking southeast. Anticline plunges to northwest. Reproduced from Sanz, Borja and Pollard, Acta Geotechnica (2007).

This talk is part of the Engineering Department Geotechnical Research Seminars series.

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