ICCM Conferences, The 8th International Conference on Computational Methods (ICCM2017)

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Simulation of hydraulic fracturing process by using peridynamics
Shuhui Li, Fan Wu

Last modified: 2017-06-27


A non-local bond-based peridynamic method is employed to simulate the hydraulic fracture process since it involves propagation of massive cracks in a brittle solid where crack branching and interaction present. Traditional numerical methods (e.g. XFEM) developed specially for cracks are awkward to simulate hydraulic fracture process because of its huge amount of cracks. Instead, peridynamic as a recently developed theory of solid mechanics replaces the partial differential equations of the classical continuum theory with integral equations. Hence, its basic equations are valid everywhere, regardless of continuities. This prominent advantage enables peridynamic to simulate hydraulic fracture process. This paper applies the peridynamic method to simulate the hydraulic fracturing of shale, containing horizontal well fracking with multiple perforations and initial natural cracks. A new scheme of tracing crack path and applying hydraulic fracture pressure is proposed. And some preliminary 2D results are presented to illustrate the validity of the proposed method. The numerical results show that hydraulic fracture cracks can restrain each other when they get close. With different angles of initial natural cracks, the crack pattern presents big difference.


Peridynamic, Hydraulic fracture, Massive cracks, Fragmentation, Crack propagation

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