Simulation of contact and fluid structure interaction in rough rock fractures with L2-projections

Staff - Faculty of Informatics

Date: / -

USI Lugano Campus, room SI-008, Informatics building (Via G. Buffi 13)

You are cordially invited to attend the PhD Dissertation Defense of Cyrill von Planta on Tuesday November 12th, 2019 at 10:30 in room SI-008 (Informatics building).

In order to extract geothermal energy from the hot interior of the earth, enhanced geothermal systems are engineered artificially by hydraulic stimulation. The goal is to create large subsurface networks of fractured rock with high permeability to water. However, engineering these systems is economically and ecologically hazardous. This is owed to the fact that the geophysical processes occurring in depth are not completely understood and efficient simulations tools to model these do not exist. In this thesis we look at three challenges inherent to the simulation of these processes. The first is the ubiquitous presence of contact problems between the geometrically complex rough rock surfaces in the fracture network and how they are to be formulated. The second is the efficient solution of those multibody contact problems. And the third is to model the fluid structure interaction between water flowing through the fracture and the surrounding rock. We investigate, how we can apply the well-known concept of the L2-projection to build geometrically and physically more accurate, and computationally more efficient simulation tools for hydro-mechanical processes occurring in rough rock fractures.

Dissertation Committee:

  • Prof. Rolf Krause, Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland (Research Advisor)
  • Prof. Igor Pivkin, Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland (Internal Member)
  • Prof. Olaf Schenk, Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland (Internal Member)
  • Prof. Thomas Driesner, ETH Zurich, Switzerland (External Member)
  • Prof. Christian Hesch, Universitaet Siegen, Germany (External Member)