Statistics of joint spacing in rock layers

Avinoam Rabinovitch, Dov Bahat, Revital Greenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We show that spacing statistics can be obtained for all fracture densities by the same equation. Using the simple shear lag theory, it is demonstrated that the results adequately fit experimental measurements. Theoretically, it is shown that two parameters are sufficient to characterize all spacing distributions. It is found that no real spacing saturation exists. Rather, a very low increase in joint densities occurs for a very high incremental stress increase. Moreover the transition to this kind of saturation is gradual and not abrupt. In this way the high density distributions with very small inter-joint distances, which pose a problem for saturation models, are directly explained. Correlation with creep experiments is also established. Comparison of our method with Weibull statistics is performed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1065-1076
Number of pages12
JournalGeological Magazine
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2012


  • joint spacing
  • saturation
  • statistics
  • stress analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geology


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