Extension of plasticity theory to debonding, grain dissolution, and chemical damage of calcarenites

Matteo O. Ciantia, Claudio Di Prisco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


The mechanical properties of calcarenites are known to be significantly affected by water saturation: both stiffness and strength decrease for wetting in the short term and for chemical dissolution in the long term. Both processes mainly affect bonds among grains: immediately after inundation depositional bonds fall in suspension, whereas diagenetic bonds dissolve more slowly. In this paper, the authors started from the micro-structural analysis of the weathering processes to conceive a strain hardening hydro-chemo-mechanical coupled elastoplastic constitutive model. The concept of extended hardening rules is here enriched: weathering functions have been determined by employing a micro to macro simplified upscaling procedure. Chemical damage is incorporated into the formulation by means of a scalar damage function. Its evolution is also described by using a multiscale approach. A new term is added to the strain rate tensor in order to incorporate the dissolution induced chemical deformations developing once the soft rock is turned into a granular material. A calibration procedure for the constitutive parameters is suggested, and the model is validated by using both coupled and uncoupled chemo-mechanical experimental test results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)315-343
Number of pages29
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number3
Early online date14 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - 25 Feb 2016


  • Calcarenite
  • Carbonate rocks
  • Chemical deformations
  • Dissolution
  • Hydro-chemo-mechanical coupling
  • Inundation
  • Long-term debonding
  • Short-term debonding
  • Weathering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • General Materials Science
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials


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