A coupled discrete element-finite difference approach for modeling mechanical response of fluid-saturated porous materials

S. G. Psakhie, A. V. Dimaki, E. V. Shilko, S. V. Astafurov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)


A model of fluid-saturated poroelastic medium was developed based on a combination of the discrete element method and grid method. The developed model adequately accounts for the deformation, fracture, and multiscale internal structure of a porous solid skeleton. The multiscale porous structure is taken into account implicitly by assigning the porosity and permeability values for the enclosing skeleton, which determine the rate of filtration of a fluid. Macroscopic pores and voids are taken into account explicitly by specifying the computational domain geometry. The relationship between the stress-strain state of the solid skeleton and pore fluid pressure is described in the approximations of simply deformable discrete element and Biot's model of poroelasticity. The developed model was applied to study the mechanical response of fluid-saturated samples of brittle material. Based on simulation results, we constructed a generalized logistic dependence of uniaxial compressive strength on loading rate, mechanical properties of fluid and enclosing skeleton, and on sample dimensions. The logistic form of the generalized dependence of strength of fluid-saturated elastic-brittle porous materials is due to the competition of two interrelated processes, such as pore fluid pressure increase under solid skeleton compression and fluid outflow from the enclosing skeleton to the environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)623-643
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 25 May 2016



  • Coupled model
  • DEM
  • Filtration
  • Permeability
  • Poroelasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Numerical Analysis

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