Multiscale evolution mechanism of sandstone under wet-dry cycles of deionized water: From molecular scale to macroscopic scale

J Meng and CD Li and JQ Zhou and ZH Zhang and SY Yan and YH Zhang and DW Huang and GH Wang, JOURNAL OF ROCK MECHANICS AND GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEERING, 15, 1171-1185 (2023).

DOI: 10.1016/j.jrmge.2022.10.008

Water is the most abundant molecule found on the earth's surface and is a key factor in multiscale rock destruction. However, given the fine- grained nature of rock and the complexity of its internal structure, the microstructural evolution of rock under the action of water has not yet been elucidated in detail, and little is understood about the relationship between the rock structure and solideliquid unit. A variety of techniques were used in this study to track the mechanical properties, pore and crack characteristics, and mineral structure degradation characteristics of sandstone at different stages under the action of deionized water, and the evolution mechanisms of the microstructure were analyzed at the molecular scale. The results showed that during the watererock interaction process, water was adsorbed onto the surface of dolomite minerals and the hydrophilic surface of clay minerals, forming a high-density hydrogen bond network. However, different mineral surface structures had different water adsorption structures, resulting in the strain of the dense clay mineral aggregates under expansion action. Stress concentrated at crack tips under the capillary force of dolomite minerals (very weak dolomite dissolution). These effects resulted in a substantial increase in the number of small pores and enhancements in poreecrack connectivity, and the rock strength exhibited varying degrees of decline at different stages of wet-dry cycles. In general, the results of this paper will help to further elucidate the internal connections between molecular-scale and macroscale processes in rock science. (c) 2023 Institute of Rock and Soil Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license ( licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Return to Publications page