To experimentally investigate the stability of underground excavations under high in situ stress conditions, several rock samples with a mini-tunnel were prepared and subjected to monotonic axial and coupled static–dynamic loading until failure. Mini-tunnels were generated by drilling circular or cubic cavities in the centre of granite rock blocks. Strain gauges were used to monitor the deformation of the mini-tunnels at different locations, and a high-speed camera system was used to capture the cracking and failure process. We found that the dynamic crack initiation stress, failure mode and dynamic crack velocity of the specimen all depend on the pre-stress level when the sample is under otherwise similar dynamic disturbance conditions. The crack initiation stress threshold first increased slightly and then decreased dramatically with the increase in the pre-stress value. The specimens were mainly fractured by tensile cracks parallel to the compression line under lower pre-stress, while they were severely damaged with additional shear cracks under higher pre-stress. Furthermore, the propagation velocity of the primary crack was significantly larger than that of the subsequent cracks. The effect of applying different amounts of static pre-stresses on the velocity of the primary tensile crack was similar to that observed for the crack initiation stress threshold; however, it did not affect the velocity of the secondary and subsequent tensile cracks.
Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 9, 2017
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