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A Conventional straddle-sliding-packer system as a borehole extensometer; Monitoring shear displacement of a fault during an injection test

Ishii, Eiichi 

A constant-head step injection test using a conventional straddle-packer system was performed for a normal fault in siliceous mudstone. The test applied a new method whereby axial displacements of isolated test sections in a borehole during injection are monitored by measuring the pressures of sliding packers and the pore pressure in the test section. The measured pressures and axial displacement, and the injection flow rate, were used to estimate the hydraulic aperture, shear displacement, normal compliance, normal stress, shear stiffness and hydraulic dilation angle of the fault during the test. The injection successfully yielded a large shear displacement during normal faulting of up to 13.3-49.5 mm (including the estimation error), which left residual shear displacement of 2.8-10.4 mm after a remarkable shear-slip event. The shear stiffness during faulting is estimated to be 2.3 $$times$$ 10$$^{7}$$ to 8.4 $$times$$ 10$$^{7}$$ Pa m$$^{-1}$$ (considering the estimation error), which is consistent with empirically predicted values based on previous studies. The hydraulic dilation angle was inferred to be effectively zero as the residual shear displacement did not leave any increase in hydraulic aperture. The experimental method applied here does not require specialized equipment and could aid in the investigation of the hydromechanical behavior of subsurface fractures or aquifers.

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Category:Engineering, Geological

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