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Volume 2017, Article ID 4129240, 8 pages
Research Article

Determining the REV for Fracture Rock Mass Based on Seepage Theory

1Department of Earthquake Science, Institute of Disaster Prevention, Sanhe 065201, China
2School of Water Resources and Environment, China University of Geosciences, Beijing 100083, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Lili Zhang; moc.621@861ililgnahz

Received 9 January 2017; Revised 8 March 2017; Accepted 20 April 2017; Published 14 May 2017

Academic Editor: Shuyu Sun

Copyright © 2017 Lili Zhang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Seepage problems of the fractured rock mass have always been a heated topic within hydrogeology and engineering geology. The equivalent porous medium model method is the main method in the study of the seepage of the fractured rock mass and its engineering application. The key to the method is to determine a representative elementary volume (REV). The FractureToKarst software, that is, discrete element software, is a main analysis tool in this paper and developed by a number of authors. According to the standard of rock classification established by ISRM, this paper aims to discuss the existence and the size of REV of fractured rock masses with medium tractility and provide a general method to determine the existence of REV. It can be gleaned from the study that the existence condition of fractured rock mass with medium tractility features average fracture spacing smaller than 0.6 m. If average fracture spacing is larger than 0.6 m, there is no existence of REV. The rationality of the model is verified by a case study. The present research provides a method for the simulation of seepage field in fissured rocks.