University of Liverpool

Key laboratory expertise

  • Rock deformation
  • Friction and slip on fault zones
  • Fracture permeability and upscaling
  • Hydration and dehydration of crustal minerals
  • Physical properties of rocks

 

Staff and Students

The work of the Rock Deformation laboratory is supported by a full time technician and 4 members of full time academic staff. We currently host 3 PhD students.

Alumni from the lab can be found in academia, industry, and government posts worldwide.

Rock Deformation Laboratory

Our laboratory has built a worldwide reputation for excellence and is at the leading edge of research within experimental rock deformation. We can reproduce conditions from the brittle crust to the upper mantle to understand earthquakes to mountain building to mantle flow. We specialize in innovative design of equipment and experiments and most of our equipment was designed and built in Liverpool.

Equipment

Triaxial deformation apparatus TR1: Servo-controlled confining pressure <200 MPa, Servo-controlled pore pressure <200 MPa, Strain rates from 10-8 s-1 to 10-5 s-1, Temperature <200 degC
Triaxial deformation apparatus TR2: Servo-controlled confining pressure <250 MPa, Servo-controlled pore pressure <200 MPa, Strain rates from 10-8 s-1 to 10-5 s-1, Temperature <200 degC, Acoustic measurements (8 electrical feed throughs with axial P and S wave measurements)
Triaxial deformation apparatus TR3: Servo-controlled confining pressure <250 MPa, Servo-controlled pore pressure <200 MPa, Strain rates from 10-8 s-1 to 10-5 s-1, Argon gas confining medium, Temperature <800 degC
Rotary shear apparatus: Fully confined ring shear sample assembly, Servo-hydraulic axial load actuator <700 kN, Fast-acting servo-hydraulic confining pressure <200 MPa, Upstream and downstream servo-controlled pore pressure <200 MPa, Displacement rates from 0.01 microns/s to 2m/s, Acoustic/electrical¬† measurements (15 electrical feed throughs)
High-temperature hydrostatic apparatus: Servo-controlled confining pressure <200 MPa, Servo-controlled pore pressure <200 MPa-1, Temperature <800 degC
Hydrostatic apparatus: Servo-controlled confining pressure <200 MPa, Servo-controlled upstream and downstream pore pressure control <200 MPa, Acoustic measurements (8 electrical feed throughs with axial P and S wave measurements)
Uniaxial hydraulic press: Brazilian jig for tensile strength measurements, Acoustic measurements (axial P and S wave measurements), Axial and radial strain gauge measurements
Solid medium ‘Griggs’ apparatus: Confining pressure <2 GPa, Strain rates from 10-8 s-1 to 10-4 s-1, Temperature <1200 degC
High temperature creep apparatus: Dead-loading creep apparatus design, High resolution displacement measurement via a double LVDT displacement cage, Temperature <1500 degC, Controlled atmosphere furnace; Argon gas, CO2
High temperature horizontal tube furnace: Temperature <1700 degC, Controlled atmosphere furnace; Argon gas, CO2
BET surface area analysis
Helium pycnometer


Current Projects

- Fault and friction effects: the influence of water on fault weakening under in-situ stresses;