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Collaboration with Swansea University

Updated: Feb 25, 2022

We are collaborating with Prof. Djordje Peric at Swansea University providing ParaGeo and part-supervision/funding to a PhD project entitled “Computational Analysis of Geological Formations on Multiple-Length and Time Scales” withing the scope of the EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP).

The research work will combine academic knowledge within Swansea University and our modelling expertise, with the aim to investigate the controls and potential models for Earthquake prediction using coupled geomechanical/flow models. Two particular goals are:

1. Improvement of the understanding of why and when earthquakes occur, which has a crucial impact on safety in regions of seismogenic activity.

2. Development of constitutive models that capture the both the short-term effect of earthquakes and the long-term contribution of seismic processes on the propagation of faults over geological timescales.

An important challenge in developing reliable predictions from numerical models is to adopt appropriate assumptions and material properties. Because geological formations often exhibit structure on several length-scales (e.g. individual grain properties < material microstructure < pervasive joints) a multi-level homogenization procedure is required to facilitate upscaling from: high definition image-scale (< 2mm) → scale of material heterogeneities (e.g. micro-cracks, small-scale natural fractures) → geological-scale element size (5-10m). This study will, in particular, focus on how to characterize nonlinear models for materials with multiple length and, importantly, multiple time-scales; e.g. the design and characterization of geomechanical models that capture both brittle fault propagation and long-term compaction processes. The aim will be to extend multi-scale homogenization formulations developed at Swansea University, in collaboration with TCGA, to incorporate the specific requirements for geological applications.


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