Experimental Investigation on Mechanical Behavior of Coarse Marble Under Six Different Loading Paths

Research paper by S. Q. Yang, H. W. Jing, Y. S. Li, L. J. Han

Indexed on: 18 May '10Published on: 18 May '10Published in: Experimental mechanics


A series of triaxial compression experiments were preformed for the coarse marble samples under different loading paths by the rock mechanics servo-controlled testing system. Based on the experimental results of complete stress-strain curves, the influence of loading path on the strength and deformation failure behavior of coarse marble is made a detailed analysis. Three loading paths (Paths I–III) are put forward to confirm the strength parameters (cohesion and internal friction angle) of coarse marble in accordance with linear Mohr-Coulomb criterion. Compared among the strength parameters, two loading paths (i.e. Path II by stepping up the confining pressure and Path III by reducing the confining pressure after peak strength) are suggested to confirm the triaxial strengths of rock under different confining pressures by only one sample, which is very applicable for a kind of rock that has obvious plastic and ductile deformation behavior (e.g. marble, chalk, mudstone, etc.). In order to investigate re-fracture mechanical behavior of rock material, three loading paths (Paths IV–VI) are also put forward for flawed coarse marble. The peak strength and deformation failure mode of flawed coarse marble are found depending on the loading paths (Paths IV–VI). Under lower confining pressures, the peak strength and Young’s modulus of damage sample (compressed until post-peak stress under higher confining pressure) are all lower compared with that of flawed sample; moreover mechanical parameter of damage sample is lower for the larger compressed post-peak plastic deformation of coarse marble. However under higher confining pressures (e.g. σ3 = 30 MPa), the axial supporting capacity and elastic modulus of damage coarse marble (compressed until post-peak stress under lower confining pressure) is not related to the loading path, while the deformation modulus and peak strain of damage sample depend on the difference of initial confining pressure and post-peak plastic deformation. The friction among crystal grains determines the strength behavior of flawed coarse marble under various loading paths. In the end, the effect of loading path on failure mode of intact and flawed coarse marble is also investigated. The present research provides increased understanding of the fundamental nature of rock failure under different loading paths.