Enriched finite elements for branching cracks in deformable porous media

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In this paper, we propose and verify a numerical approach to simulate fluid flow in deformable porous media without requiring the discretization to conform to the geometry of the sealed fractures (possibly intersecting). This approach is based on a fully coupled hydro-mechanical analysis and an extended finite element method (XFEM) to represent discrete fractures. Convergence tests indicate that the proposed scheme is both consistent and stable. The contributions of this paper include: (1) a new junction enrichment to describe intersecting fractures in deformable porous media; (2) the treatment of sealed fractures. We employ the resulting discretization scheme to perform numerical experiments, to illustrate that the inclination angles of the fractures and the penetration ratio of the sealed fractures are two key parameters governing the flow within the fractured porous medium.




Sheng, M., Li, G., Shah, S., Lamb, A. R., & Bordas, S. P. A. (2015). Enriched finite elements for branching cracks in deformable porous media. Engineering Analysis with Boundary Elements, 50, 435–446. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enganabound.2014.09.010

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