Observation and modeling of the suction pump effect during rapid dilatant slip

Eric Grueschow, Ohmyoung Kwon*, Ian G. Main, John W. Rudnicki

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The temporary pressure drop observed during post-peak dilatant slip in axi-symmetric testing of a porous aeolian sandstone is modeled using a simple function of opening caused by sliding along the fault surface. Results suggest dilatancy of 0.02 mm accompanying frictional sliding, less than 10% of the typical grain diameter of 0.25-0.50 mm. The rapid void opening, under nominally undrained conditions at constant upstream flow rate, cause a strong 'suction pump' effect. A theoretical maximum pressure drop of 0.09 MPa or more, consistent with the experimentally measured results, can occur without a change in permeability properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)30-1 - 30-4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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