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Multiphase Flow in Complex Fracture Apertures under a Wide Range of Flow Conditions

Description: A better understanding of multiphase flow through fractures requires knowledge of the detailed physics of interfacial flows at the microscopic pore scale. The objective of our project was to develop tools for the simulation of such phenomena. Complementary work was performed by a group led by Dr.~Paul Meakin of the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory. Our focus was on the lattice-Boltzmann (LB) method. In particular, we studied both the statics and dynamics of contact lines where two fluids (wetting and non-wetting) meet solid boundaries. Previous work had noted deficiencies in the way LB methods simulate such interfaces. Our work resulted in significant algorithmic improvements that alleviated these deficiencies. As a result, we were able to study in detail the behavior of the dynamic contact angle in flow through capillary tubes. Our simulations revealed that our LB method reproduces the correct scaling of the dynamic contact angle with respect to velocity, viscosity, and surface tension, without specification of an artificial slip length. Further study allowed us to identify the microscopic origin of the dynamic contact angle in LB methods. These results serve to delineate the range of applicability of multiphase LB methods to flows through complex geometries.
Date: December 12, 2006
Creator: Rothman, Daniel H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Aligned vertical fractures, HTI reservoir symmetry, and Thomsenseismic anisotropy parameters for polar media

Description: Sayers and Kachanov (1991) defined crack-influence parameters that are shown to be directly related to Thomsen (1986) weak-anisotropy seismic parameters for fractured reservoirs when the crack/fracture density is small enough. These results are then applied to the problem of seismic wave propagation in polar (i.e., non-isotropic) reservoirs having HTI seismic wave symmetry due to the presence of aligned vertical fractures and resulting in azimuthal seismic wave symmetry at the earth's surface. The approach presented suggests one method of inverting for fracture density from wave-speed data. It is also observed that the angular location {theta}{sub ex} of the extreme value (peak or trough) of the quasi-SV-wave speed for VTI occurs at an angle determined approximately by the formula tan{sup 2} {theta}{sub ex} {approx_equal} tan {theta}{sub m} = [(c{sub 33} - c{sub 44})/(c{sub 11}-c{sub 44})]{sup 1/2}, where {theta}{sub m} is an angle determined directly (as shown) from the c{sub ij} elastic stiffnesses, whenever these are known from either quasi-static or seismic wave measurements. Alternatively, {theta}{sub ex} is given in terms of the Thomsen seismic anisotropy parameters by tan {theta}{sub ex} {approx_equal} ([v{sub p}{sup 2}(0)-v{sub s}{sup 2}(0)]/[(1 + 2{epsilon})v{sub p}{sup 2}(0)-v{sub s}{sup 2}(0)]){sup 1/4}, where {epsilon} = (c{sub 11}-c{sub 33})/2c{sub 33}, v{sub p}{sup 2}(0) = c{sub 33}/{rho}, and v{sub s}{sup 2}(0) = c{sub 44}/{rho}, with {rho} being the background inertial mass density. The axis of symmetry is always treated here as the x{sub 3}-axis for either VTI symmetry (due, for example, to horizontal cracks), or HTI symmetry (due to aligned vertical cracks). Then the meaning of the stiffnesses is derived from the fracture analysis in the same way for VTI and HTI media, but for HTI the wave speeds relative to the earth's surface are shifted by 90{sup o} in the plane perpendicular to the aligned vertical fractures. Skempton's (1954) coefficient is used …
Date: December 12, 2007
Creator: Berryman, James G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Random polycrystals of grains containing cracks: Model ofquasistatic elastic behavior for fractured systems

Description: A model study on fractured systems was performed using aconcept that treats isotropic cracked systems as ensembles of crackedgrains by analogy to isotropic polycrystalline elastic media. Theapproach has two advantages: (a) Averaging performed is ensembleaveraging, thus avoiding the criticism legitimately leveled at mosteffective medium theories of quasistatic elastic behavior for crackedmedia based on volume concentrations of inclusions. Since crack effectsare largely independent of the volume they occupy in the composite, sucha non-volume-based method offers an appealingly simple modelingalternative. (b) The second advantage is that both polycrystals andfractured media are stiffer than might otherwise be expected, due tonatural bridging effects of the strong components. These same effectshave also often been interpreted as crack-crack screening inhigh-crack-density fractured media, but there is no inherent conflictbetween these two interpretations of this phenomenon. Results of thestudy are somewhat mixed. The spread in elastic constants observed in aset of numerical experiments is found to be very comparable to the spreadin values contained between the Reuss and Voigt bounds for thepolycrystal model. However, computed Hashin-Shtrikman bounds are much tootight to be in agreement with the numerical data, showing thatpolycrystals of cracked grains tend to violate some implicit assumptionsof the Hashin-Shtrikman bounding approach. However, the self-consistentestimates obtained for the random polycrystal model are nevertheless verygood estimators of the observed average behavior.
Date: July 8, 2006
Creator: Berryman, James G. & Grechka, Vladimir
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Fracture Characterization in Enhanced Geothermal Systems by Wellbore and Reservoir Analysis

Description: This report highlights the work that was done to characterize fractured geothermal reservoirs using production data. That includes methods that were developed to infer characteristic functions from production data and models that were designed to optimize reinjection scheduling into geothermal reservoirs, based on these characteristic functions. The characterization method provides a robust way of interpreting tracer and flow rate data from fractured reservoirs. The flow-rate data are used to infer the interwell connectivity, which describes how injected fluids are divided between producers in the reservoir. The tracer data are used to find the tracer kernel for each injector-producer connection. The tracer kernel describes the volume and dispersive properties of the interwell flow path. A combination of parametric and nonparametric regression methods were developed to estimate the tracer kernels for situations where data is collected at variable flow-rate or variable injected concentration conditions. The characteristic functions can be used to calibrate thermal transport models, which can in turn be used to predict the productivity of geothermal systems. This predictive model can be used to optimize injection scheduling in a geothermal reservoir, as is illustrated in this report.
Date: June 30, 2012
Creator: Roland N. Horne, Kewen Li, Mohammed Alaskar, Morgan Ames, Carla Co, Egill Juliusson, Lilja Magnusdottir
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Experimental and Analytical Research on Fracture Processes in Rock

Description: Experimental studies on fracture propagation and coalescence were conducted which together with previous tests by this group on gypsum and marble, provide information on fracturing. Specifically, different fracture geometries wsere tested, which together with the different material properties will provide the basis for analytical/numerical modeling. INitial steps on the models were made as were initial investigations on the effect of pressurized water on fracture coalescence.
Date: February 27, 2009
Creator: Einstein, Herbert H..; Miller, Jay & Silva, Bruno
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Using Chemicals to Optimize Conformance Control in Fractured Reservoirs

Description: This technical progress report describes work performed from October 1, 1998 through December 31, 1998, for the project, ''Using Chemicals to Optimize Conformance in Fractured Reservoirs.'' In our first task area, disproportionate permeability reduction, a literature survey and analysis are underway to identify options for reducing permeability to water much more than that to oil. In our second task area, we are encouraging the use of our recently developed software for sizing gelant treatments in hydraulically fractured production wells. In several field applications, we noted the importance of obtaining accurate values of the static reservoir pressure before using our program. In our third task area, we examined gel properties as they extruded through fractures. We found stable pressure gradients during injection of a large volume of a one-day-old Cr(III)-acetate-HPAM gel into a 0.04-in.-wide, four-ft-long fracture. This finding confirms that gel injection (under our specific circumstances) did not lead to continuously increasing pressure gradients and severely limited gel propagation. Our experiments also provided insights into the mechanism for gel propagation during extrusion through fractures.
Date: June 8, 1999
Creator: Seright, R.S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

In Vitro Fracture of Human Cortical Bone: Local Fracture Criteria and Toughening Mechanisms

Description: A micro-mechanistic understanding of bone fracture that encompasses how cracks interact with the underlying microstructure and defines their local failure mode is lacking, despite extensive research on the response of bone to a variety of factors like aging, loading, and/or disease. Micro-mechanical models for fracture incorporating such local failure criteria have been widely developed for metallic and ceramic materials systems; however, few such deliberations have been undertaken for the fracture of bone. In fact, although the fracture event in mineralized tissues such as bone is commonly believed to be locally strain controlled, until recently there has been little experimental evidence to support this widely held belief. In the present study, a series of in vitro experiments involving a double-notch bend test geometry are performed in order to shed further light on the nature of the local cracking events that precede catastrophic fracture in bone and to define their relationship to the microstructure. Specifically, crack-microstructure interactions are examined to determine the salient toughening mechanisms in human cortical bone and to characterize how these may affect the anisotropy in fracture properties. Based on preliminary micro-mechanical models of these processes, in particular crack deflection and uncracked ligament bridging, the relative importance of these toughening mechanisms is established.
Date: August 18, 2004
Creator: Nalla, R.; Stolken, J.; Kinney, J. & Ritchie, R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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DEVELOPMENT PRACTICES FOR OPTIMIZED MEOR IN SHALLOW HEAVY OIL RESERVOIRS

Description: The objective of this research project is to demonstrate an economically viable and sustainable method of producing shallow heavy oil reserves in western Missouri and southeastern Kansas, using an integrated approach including surface geochemical surveys, conventional MEOR treatments, horizontal fracturing in vertical wells, electrical resistivity tomography (ERT), and reservoir simulation to optimize the recovery process. The objective also includes transferring the knowledge gained from the project to other local landowners, to demonstrate how they may identify and develop their own heavy oil resources with minimal capital investment. In the twelve to eighteen-month project period, three wells were equipped with ERT arrays. Electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) background measurements were taken in the three ERT equipped wells. Pumping equipment was installed on the two fracture stimulated wells and pumping tests were conducted following the hydraulic fracture treatments. All wells were treated monthly with microbes, by adding a commercially available microbial mixture to wellbore fluids. ERT surveys were taken on a monthly basis, following microbial treatments. Worked performed to date demonstrates that resistivity changes are occurring in the subsurface, with resistivity increasing slightly. Pumping results for the hydraulically fractured wells were disappointing, with only a show of oil recovered and an increase in well shut-in pressure.
Date: June 1, 2005
Creator: Dunn-Norman, Shari
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Natural and Induced Fracture Diagnostics from 4-D VSP Low Permeability Gas Reservoirs

Description: Tight gas sand reservoirs generally contain thick gas-charged intervals that often have low porosity and very low permeability. Natural and induced fractures provide the only means of production. The objective of this work is to locate and characterize natural and induced fractures from analysis of scattered waves recorded on 4-D (time lapse) VSP data in order to optimize well placement and well spacing in these gas reservoirs. Using model data simulating the scattering of seismic energy from hydraulic fractures, we first show that it is possible to characterize the quality of fracturing based upon the amount of scattering. In addition, the picked arrival times of recorded microseismic events provide the velocity moveout for isolating the scattered energy on the 4-D VSP data. This concept is applied to a field dataset from the Jonah Field in Wyoming to characterize the quality of the induced hydraulic fractures. The time lapse (4D) VSP data from this field are imaged using a migration algorithm that utilizes shot travel time tables derived from the first breaks of the 3D VSPs and receiver travel time tables based on the microseismic arrival times and a regional velocity model. Four azimuthally varying shot tables are derived from picks of the first breaks of over 200 VSP records. We create images of the fracture planes through two of the hydraulically fractured wells in the field. The scattered energy shows correlation with the locations of the microseismic events. In addition, the azimuthal scattering is different from the azimuthal reflectivity of the reservoir, giving us more confidence that we have separated the scattered signal from simple formation reflectivity. Variation of the scattered energy along the image planes suggests variability in the quality of the fractures in three distinct zones.
Date: September 30, 2008
Creator: Willis, Mark E.; Burns, Daniel R. & Toksoz, M. Nafi
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Water infiltration and intermittent flow in rough-walled fractures

Description: Flow visualization experiments were conducted in transparent replicas of natural rough-walled fractures. The fracture was inclined to observe the interplay between capillary and gravity forces. Water was introduced into the fracture by a capillary siphon. Preferential flow paths were observed, where intermittent flow frequently occurred. The water infiltration experiments suggest that intermittent flow in fractures appears to be the rule rather than the exception. In order to investigate the mechanism causing intermittent flow in fractures, parallel plates with different apertures were assembled using lucite and glass. A medium-coarse-fine pore structure is believed to cause the intermittency in flow. Intermittent flow was successfully produced in the parallel plate experiments using the lucite plates. After several trials, intermittent flow was also produced in the glass plates.
Date: May 1, 1995
Creator: Su, G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Effect of Aging on the Toughness of Human Cortical Bone: Evaluation by R-Curves

Description: Age-related deterioration of the fracture properties of bone, coupled with increased life expectancy, are responsible for increasing incidence of bone fracture in the elderly, and hence, an understanding of how its fracture properties degrade with age is essential. The present study describes ex vivo fracture experiments to quantitatively assess the effect of aging on the fracture toughness properties of human cortical bone in the longitudinal direction. Because cortical bone exhibits rising crack-growth resistance with crack extension, unlike most previous studies the toughness is evaluated in terms of resistance-curve (R-curve) behavior, measured for bone taken from wide range of age groups (34-99 years). Using this approach, both the ex vivo crack-initiation and crack-growth toughness are determined and are found to deteriorate with age; the initiation toughness decreases some 40% over six decades from 40 to 100 years, while the growth toughness is effectively eliminated over the same age range. The reduction in crack-growth toughness is considered to be associated primarily with a degradation in the degree of extrinsic toughening, in particular involving crack bridging in the wake of the crack.
Date: October 8, 2004
Creator: Kinney, J
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Investigation of Efficiency Improvements During CO2 Injection in Hydraulically and Naturally Fractured Reservoirs Progress Report

Description: This report describes the work performed during the fourth year of the project, ''Investigating of Efficiency Improvements during CO{sub 2} Injection in Hydraulically and Naturally Fractured Reservoirs.'' The objective of this project is to perform unique laboratory experiments with artificially fractured cores (AFCs) and X-ray CT scanner to examine the physical mechanisms of bypassing in hydraulically fractured reservoirs (HFR) and naturally fractured reservoirs (NFR) that eventually result in more efficient CO{sub 2} flooding in heterogeneous or fracture-dominated reservoirs. In Chapter 1, we worked with DOE-RMOTC to investigate fracture properties in the Tensleep Formation at Teapot Dome Naval Reserve as part of their CO{sub 2} sequestration project. In Chapter 2, we continue our investigation to determine the primary oil recovery mechanism in a short vertically fractured core. Finally in Chapter 3, we report our numerical modeling efforts to develop compositional simulator with irregular grid blocks.
Date: April 27, 2005
Creator: Schechter, David S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Quasi-static analysis of elastic behavior for some systems having higher fracture densities.

Description: Elastic behavior of geomechanical systems with interacting (but not intersecting) fractures is treated using generalizations of the Backus and the Schoenberg-Muir methods for analyzing layered systems whose layers are intrinsically anisotropic due to locally aligned fractures. By permitting the axis of symmetry of the locally anisotropic compliance matrix for individual layers to differ from that of the layering direction, we derive analytical formulas for interacting fractured regions with arbitrary orientations to each other. This procedure provides a systematic tool for studying how contiguous, but not yet intersecting, fractured domains interact, and provides a direct (though approximate) means of predicting when and how such interactions lead to more dramatic weakening effects and ultimately to failure of these complicated systems. The method permits decomposition of the system elastic behavior into specific eigenmodes that can all be analyzed, and provides a better understanding about which of these specific modes are expected to be most important to the evolving failure process.
Date: October 15, 2009
Creator: Berryman, J.G. & Aydin, A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Fracture imaging with converted elastic waves

Description: This paper examines the seismic signatures of discrete, finite-length fractures, and outlines an approach for elastic, prestack reverse-time imaging of discrete fractures. The results of this study highlight the importance of incorporating fracture-generated P-S converted waves into the imaging method, and presents an alternate imaging condition that can be used in elastic reverse-time imaging when a direct wave is recorded (e.g., for crosswell and VSP acquisition geometries).
Date: May 29, 2001
Creator: Nihei, K.T.; Nakagawa, S. & Myer, L.R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Simple Model Representations of Transport in a Complex Fracture and Their Effects on Long-Term Predictions

Description: A complex fracture model for fluid flow and tracer transport was previously developed that incorporates many of the important physical effects of a realistic fracture, including advection through a heterogeneous fracture plane, partitioning of flow into multiple subfractures in the third dimension, and diffusion and sorption into fracture-filling gouge, small altered rock matrix blocks within the fracture zone, and the unaltered semi-infinite rock matrix on both sides of the fracture zone (Tsang and Doughty, 2003). It is common, however, to represent the complex fracture by much simpler models consisting of a single fracture, with a uniform or heterogeneous transmissivity distribution over its plane and bounded on both sides by a homogeneous semi-infinite matrix. Simple-model properties are often inferred from the analysis of short-term (one to a few days) site characterization (SC) tracer-test data. The question addressed in this paper is: How reliable is the temporal upscaling of these simplified models? Are they adequate are for long-term calculations that cover thousands of years? In this study, a particle-tracking approach is used to calculate tracer-test breakthrough curves (BTCs) in a complex fracture model, incorporating all the features described above, for both a short-term SC tracer test and a 10,000-year calculation. The results are considered the 'real-world'. Next, two simple fracture models, one uniform and the other heterogeneous, are introduced. Properties for these simple models are taken either from laboratory data or found by calibration to the short-term SC tracer-test BTCs obtained with the complex fracture model. Then the simple models are used to simulate tracer transport at the long-term time scale. Results show that for the short-term SC tracer test, the BTCs calculated using simple models with laboratory-measured parameters differ significantly from the BTCs obtained with the complex fracture model. By adjusting model properties, the simple models can be calibrated to reproduce …
Date: November 7, 2007
Creator: Doughty, Christine; Tsang, Chin-Fu; Doughty, Christine & Uchida, Masahiro
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Improved methods for water shutoff. Semi-annual report, May 1, 1996--September 30, 1996

Description: In the United States, more than 20 billion barrels of water are produced each year during oilfield operations. Today, the cost of water disposal is typically between $0.25 and $0.50 per bbl for pipeline transport and $1.50 per bbl for trucked water. Therefore, there is a tremendous economic incentive to reduce water production if that can be accomplished without significantly sacrificing hydrocarbon production. For each 1% reduction in water production, the cost-savings to the oil industry could be between $50,000,000 and $100,000,000 per year. Reduced water production would result directly in improved oil recovery (IOR) efficiency in addition to reduced oil-production costs. A substantial positive environmental impact could also be realized if significant reductions are achieved in the amount of water produced during oilfield operations. In an earlier project, we identified fractures (either naturally or artificially induced) as a major factor that causes excess water production and reduced oil recovery efficiency, especially during waterfloods and IOR projects. We also found fractures to be a channeling and water-production problem that has a high potential for successful treatment by gels and certain other chemical blocking agents. By analogy, these blocking materials also have a high potential for treating narrow channels behind pipe and small casing leaks. We also determined that the ability of blocking agents to reduce permeability to water much more than that to oil is critical to the success of these blocking treatments in production wells if zones are not isolated during placement of the blocking agents.
Date: August 1, 1997
Creator: Seright, R.S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Investigation of Efficiency Improvements During CO2 Injection in Hydraulically and Naturally Fractured Reservoirs Progress Report

Description: This report describes the work performed during the second year of the project, ''Investigating of Efficiency Improvements during CO{sub 2} Injection in Hydraulically and Naturally Fractured Reservoirs.'' The objective of this project is to perform unique laboratory experiments with artificial fractured cores (AFCs) and X-ray CT to examine the physical mechanisms of bypassing in HFR and NFR that eventually result in less efficient CO{sub 2} flooding in heterogeneous or fracture-dominated reservoirs. To achieve this objective, in this period we concentrated our effort on investigating the effect of CO{sub 2} injection rates in homogeneous and fractured cores on oil recovery and a strategy to mitigate CO{sub 2} bypassing in a fractured core.
Date: April 26, 2004
Creator: Schechter, David S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Identifying Fracture Types and Relative Ages Using Fluid Inclusion Stratigraphy

Description: Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) are designed to recover heat from the subsurface by mechanically creating fractures in subsurface rocks. Understanding the life cycle of a fracture in a geothermal system is fundamental to the development of techniques for creating fractures. Recognizing the stage of a fracture, whether it is currently open and transmitting fluids; if it recently has closed; or if it is an ancient fracture would assist in targeting areas for further fracture stimulation. Identifying dense fracture areas as well as large open fractures from small fracture systems will also assist in fracture stimulation selection. Geothermal systems are constantly generating fractures, and fluids and gases passing through rocks in these systems leave small fluid and gas samples trapped in healed microfractures. Fluid inclusions trapped in minerals as the fractures heal are characteristic of the fluids that formed them, and this signature can be seen in fluid inclusion gas analysis. Our hypothesis is that fractures over their life cycle have different chemical signatures that we can see in fluid inclusion gas analysis and by using the new method of fluid inclusion stratigraphy (FIS) the different stages of fractures, along with an estimate of fracture size can be identified during the well drilling process. We have shown with this study that it is possible to identify fracture locations using FIS and that different fractures have different chemical signatures however that signature is somewhat dependent upon rock type. Open, active fractures correlate with increase concentrations of CO2, N2, Ar, and to a lesser extent H2O. These fractures would be targets for further enhancement. The usefulness of this method is that it is low cost alternative to current well logging techniques and can be done as a well is being drilled.
Date: June 30, 2008
Creator: Dilley, Lorie M.; Norman, David & Owens, Lara
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Investigation of Efficiency Improvements During CO2 Injection in Hydraulically and Naturally Fractured Reservoirs Progress Report

Description: This report describes the work performed during the second year of the project, ''Investigating of Efficiency Improvements during CO{sub 2} Injection in Hydraulically and Naturally Fractured Reservoirs.'' The objective of this project is to perform unique laboratory experiments with artificial fractured cores (AFCs) and X-ray CT to examine the physical mechanisms of bypassing in HFR and NFR that eventually result in less efficient CO{sub 2} flooding in heterogeneous or fracture-dominated reservoirs. To achieve this objective, in this period we concentrated our effort on modeling the fluid flow in fracture surface, examining the fluid transfer mechanisms and describing the fracture aperture distribution under different overburden pressure using X-ray CT scanner.
Date: October 2003
Creator: Schechter, David S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Fracture Characteristics in a Disposal Pit on Mesita del Buey, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Description: The characteristics of fractures in unit 2 of the Tshirege Member of the Bandelier Tuff were documented in Pit 39, a newly excavated 13.7 m deep disposal pit at Material Disposal Area G on Mesita del Buey. The average spacing between fractures is about 1.0 to 1.3 m, the average fracture aperture is about 3 to 5 mm, and the average fracture dip is about 76o to 77o. Fracture spacing and dip in Pit 39 are generally consistent with that reported from other fracture studies on the Pajarito Plateau, although the fracture apertures in Pit 39 are less than reported elsewhere. Measured fracture orientations are strongly affected by biases imparted by the orientations of the pit walls, which, combined with a small data set, make identification of potential preferred orientations dlfflcult. The most prominent fracture orientations observed in Pit 39, about E-W and N20E, are often not well represented elsewhere on the Pajarito Plateau. Fracture fills contain smectite to about 3 m depth, and calcite and opal may occur at all depths, principally associated with roots or root fossils (rhizoliths). Roots of pifion pine extend in fractures to the bottom of the pit along the north side, perhaps indicating a zone of preferred infiltration of water. Finely powdered tuff with clay-sized particles occurs within a number of fractures and may record abrasive disaggregation associated with small amounts of displacement on minor local faults.
Date: December 1, 1998
Creator: Vaniman, David T. & Reneau, Steven L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
open access

Roughness Scaling of Fracture Surfaces in Polycrystalline Materials

Description: The roughness scaling of fracture surfaces in two-dimensional grain boundary networks is studied numerically. Grain boundary networks are created using a Metropolis method in order to mimic the triple junction distributions from experiments. Fracture surfaces through these grain boundary networks are predicted using a combinatorial optimization method of maximum flow - minimum cut type. We have preliminary results from system sizes up to N = 22500 grains suggesting that the roughness scaling of these surfaces follows a random elastic manifold scaling exponent {zeta} = 2/3. We propose a strong dependence between the energy needed to create a crack and the special boundary fraction. Also the special boundaries at the crack and elsewhere in the system can be tracked.
Date: April 26, 2004
Creator: Seppala, E; Reed, B; Kumar, M; Minich, R & Rudd, R
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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