Applied Earth Sciences | June 23, 2019
The US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium annually organized by the American Rock Mechanics Association (ARMA) is one of most important and appealing events in the fields of rock mechanics, rock engineering, and geomechanics. This year, the 53rd conference was held during 23 - 26 June in New York City, USA. Dr Louis Wong (co-authored with his current PhD student Yahui Zhang) from the Department of Earth Sciences of HKU won the best paper award, for the paper “Numerical investigation of micro-mechanisms of thermal strengthening in rock”.
Rocks are typically weakened upon heating. Their research however suggests and explains why rock would be strengthened rather than weakened in a not so high temperature regime (25-175 oC). This discovery has significant scientific and social contributions, in particular to most underground engineering and energy projects which are operated in mildly heated rocks. Congratulations to Dr. Louis Wong and Yahui Zhang!