Anisotropic dual-continuum representations for multiscale poroelastic materials: Development and numerical modelling

Mark Ashworth*, Florian Doster

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
57 Downloads (Pure)


Dual-continuum (DC) models can be tractable alternatives to explicit approaches for the numerical modelling of multiscale materials with multiphysics behaviours. This work concerns the conceptual and numerical modelling of poroelastically coupled dual-scale materials such as naturally fractured rock. Apart from a few exceptions, previous poroelastic DC models have assumed isotropy of the constituents and the dual-material. Additionally, it is common to assume that only one continuum has intrinsic stiffness properties. Finally, little has been done into validating whether the DC paradigm can capture the global poroelastic behaviours of explicit numerical representations at the DC modelling scale. We address the aforementioned knowledge gaps in two steps. First, we utilise a homogenisation approach based on Levin's theorem to develop a previously derived anisotropic poroelastic constitutive model. Our development incorporates anisotropic intrinsic stiffness properties of both continua. This addition is in analogy to anisotropic fractured rock masses with stiff fractures. Second, we perform numerical modelling to test the DC model against fine-scale explicit equivalents. In doing, we present our hybrid numerical framework, as well as the conditions required for interpretation of the numerical results. The tests themselves progress from materials with isotropic to anisotropic mechanical and flow properties. The fine-scale simulations show that anisotropy can have noticeable effects on deformation and flow behaviour. However, our numerical experiments show that the DC approach can capture the global poroelastic behaviours of both isotropic and anisotropic fine-scale representations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2304-2328
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number17
Early online date7 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • anisotropy
  • constitutive modelling
  • dual-continuum
  • homogenisation
  • hybrid numerical framework
  • poroelasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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