Mechanical Properties and Energy Evolution Characteristics of karst Limestone with Different Degree of Dissolution under Uniaxial Compression


  • Jiaqi Guo Chang'an University image/svg+xml
  • Jiheng Gu Henan Polytechnic University
  • Erbo Wang Henan Polytechnic University image/svg+xml
  • Jianxun Chen Chang'an University image/svg+xml
  • Qingsong Wang China Railway 20th Bureau Group Co., Ltd



Karst limestone with different degree of dissolution, Mechanical properties, Energy evolution, failure characteristics, Particle flow, Digital image


Under the action of dissolution, rock masses form solution fissure leading to changes in their internal structure, which in turn affect their engineering mechanical properties and failure characteristics. Karst rock masses usually have a significant impact on the stability of tunnel surrounding rocks in karst stratum. This article utilizes digital image processing technology and particle flow discrete element method to numerically reconstruct calculation models of limestone with different degree of dissolution. A series of uniaxial compression discrete element numerical experiments were conducted on karst limestone with different degree of dissolution, analyzing the stress-strain relationship, mechanical parameters, failure modes, and energy changes of limestone with different degree of dissolution. Research results indicated the following: (1) The karst limestone model constructed based on digital image processing technology can effectively characterize the dissolution features of karst limestone, and numerical simulation experiments can effectively characterize the mechanical behavior of karst limestone. (2) As the degree of dissolution increases, the stress-strain curve of karst limestone gradually exhibits bimodal or multimodal characteristics, and the uniaxial compressive strength of karst limestone shows an exponential decrease trend, while the elastic modulus shows a linear decrease trend. (3) Under high degree of dissolution, the existence of pore structure causes the stress skeleton inside the karst limestone to be damaged, and the number of shear and tensile cracks is continuously decreasing. The distribution of internal force chains is dispersed, making the karst limestone more prone to failure. (4) During the process of karst limestone failure, most of the input total strain energy is first converted into elastic strain energy, and only a small portion is converted into dissipative strain energy. The increase in the degree of dissolution significantly reduces the total energy input and the storage limit of elastic strain energy during the uniaxial compression failure process of karst limestone, and increases the degree of strain energy dissipation.


Download data is not yet available.


Chen, J.X., Wang, Q.S., Guo, J.Q., Mechanical Properties and Acoustic Emission Characteristics of Karst Limestone un-der Uniaxial Compression. Adv Mater Sci Eng, 2018, pp 1–14.

Day, M.J., Karstic problems in the construction of Milwaukee's deep tunnels, Environ Geol, 45(6), 2004, pp 859-863.

Gu, D.M., Huang D., Zhang, W.G., et al, A 2D DEM-based ap-proach for modeling water-induced degradation of car-bonate rock, International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences, Vol.126, 2020.

Gutierrez, F., Parise, M., De, W.J., Jourde, H., A review on natu-ral and human-induced geohazards and impacts in karst, Earth-Sci Rev, 138, 2014, pp 61-88.

Guo, J.Q., Liu, X.L., Qiao, C.S., Experimental study of mechan-ical properties and energy mechanism of karst limestone under natural and saturated states, Chinese Journal of Rock Mechanics and Engineering, 33(02), 2014, pp 296-308.

Geng, P., Lu, Z.K., Ding, T., Research on the dynamic process simulation of rock grouting based on particle flow, Jour-nal of railway engineering society, 34(3), 2017, pp 34-40.

Huang, D., Huang, R.Q., Zhang, Y.X., Experimental investiga-tions on static loading rate effects on mechanical proper-ties and energy mechanism of coarse crystal grain marble under uniaxial compression, Chinese Journal of Rock Mechanics and Engineering, 31(2), 2012, pp 245-255.

Hamid, R.Z., Ali, U., Mostafa, S., Identifying geological haz-ards related to tunneling in carbonate karstic rocks-Zagros, Iran. Arabian Journal of Geosciences, 5, 2012, pp 457-464.

Huang, B.L., Yin, Y.P., Zhang, Z.H., Study on deterioration characteristics of shallow rock mass in water the level fluctuation zone of karst bank slopes in three gorges res-ervoir area, Chinese Journal of Rock Mechanics and En-gineering, 38(09), 2019, pp 1786-1796.

Jiao, Y.Y., Zhang, W.S., Ou, G.Z., Review of the evolution and mitigation of the water-inrush disaster in drilling-and-blasting excavated deep-buried tunnels, Hazard Control in Tunnelling and Underground Engineering, 1(1), 2019, pp 36-46.

Li, K., Pilot study on mechanics trait of tunnel karst wall rock, Southwest Jiaotong University Master Degree Thesis, 2005.

Liu, H.Y., Wu, F.Q., Qi, S.W., The dissolution process and the rock mass breakage of marlite slope in Three Gorges Res-ervoir Region, Coal Geology & Exploration, 34(4), 2006, pp 37-41.

Liu, H.Y., Li, Z.X., Guo, J.B., Analysis of mechanical effects of marl limestone dissolution model, Yellow River, 31(7), 2009, pp64-65.

Li, B., Zhao, C.Y., Li, J., Mechanism of mining-induced land-slides in the karst mountains of Southwestern China: a case study of the Baiyan landslide in Guizhou, Land-slides, 20, 2023, pp 1481–1495.

Ning, J.G., Wang, J., Jian, J., Estimation of crack initiation and propagation thresholds of confined brittle coal specimens based on energy dissipation theory, Rock Mechanics & Rock Engineering, (5), 2017, pp 1-16.

Song, K.I., Cho, G.C., Chang, S.B., Identification, remediation, and analysis of karst sinkholes in the longest railroad tun-nel in South Korea, Engineering Geology, 135-136(7), 2012, pp 92-105.

Wang, Q.S., Chen, J.X., Guo, J.Q., Acoustic emission character-istics and energy mechanism in karst limestone failure under uniaxial and triaxle compression, Bulletin of Engi-neering Geology & the Environment, (3), 2017, pp 1-16.

Wang, Q.S., Chen, J.X., Guo, J.Q., Strain rate effect on acoustic emission characteristics and energy mechanisms of karst limestone under uniaxial compression, Advances in Mate-rials Science and Engineering, 78, 2020, pp 1427–1442

Wang, G.L., Wang, R.Q., Sun, F., RA-AF characteristics of acoustic emission and failure mode of karst-fissure lime-stone under uniaxial compression, China Journal of Highway and Transport, 35(08), 2022, pp 118-128.

Xie, H.P., Ju, Y., Li, L.Y., Criteria for strength and structural failure of rocks based on energy dissipation and energy release principles, Chinese Journal of Rock Mechanics and Engineering, (17), 2005, pp 3003-3010.

Xiong, S.Z., Shi, W.B., Wang, X.M., Damage and failure char-acteristics of karst fractured rock mass under uniaxial compression, Journal of Engineering Geology, 30(4), 2022, pp 1098-1110.

Yu, L., Li, Z., Wang, M.N., Kan, H.M., Study on the influence of weak karst development on mechanical parameters of surrounding rock, Journal of Railway Science and Engi-neering, 15(02), 2018, pp 435-443.

Yu, X.X., Shi, W.B., Wang, X.M., Simulation on mesoscopic deformation and failure mechanism of dissolved rock mass using digital image processing technology, Carsolog-ica Sinica, 39(3), 2020, 409-416.

Zhang, S.R., Wang, X.H., Wang, C., Effects of pore structure and its development degree on dissolution rock mechani-cal characteristics, Journal of Tianjin University, 50(10), 2017, pp, 1018-1028.

Zhu, L., Wang, X.Q., Nie, D.X., Stochastic method based eval-uation of corrosion rock strength parameters, Journal of Engineering Geology 22(06), 2014, pp 1034-1038.




How to Cite

Guo, J., Gu, J., Wang, E., Chen, J. and Wang, Q. (2023) “Mechanical Properties and Energy Evolution Characteristics of karst Limestone with Different Degree of Dissolution under Uniaxial Compression”, Electronic Journal of Structural Engineering, 24(1), pp. 45–52. doi: 10.56748/ejse.24513.




Funding data