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Are polymers suitable rock analogs?


Pakula,  Tadeusz
MPI for Polymer Research, Max Planck Society;

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ten Grotenhuis, S. M., Piazolo, S., Pakula, T., Passchier, C. W., & Bons, P. D. (2002). Are polymers suitable rock analogs? Tectonophysics, 350(1), 35-47.

To evaluate if a polymer is suitable for analog modeling, it is essential to know the theological properties of the material. Polymers used in analog modeling exhibit a complex theological behavior; only part of which has been taken into account in most modeling studies. The mechanical behavior is strongly dependent on strain rate and temperature, and is characterized by specific dependencies of the storage and loss moduli, related to the elasticity and viscosity, on the deformation rate (frequency). We have measured the storage and loss moduli at a broad range of strain rates and strains, using an oscillatory parallel-disk rheometer. Investigated materials are polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), mixtures of PDMS and BaSO4 (filler), Rhodorsil Gomme and mixtures of Rhodorsil Gomme and plastilina, all commonly used in analog experiments. Our measurements show that the theological properties of mixtures of plastilina and Rhodorsil Gomme depend on its deformation history. Therefore, these mixtures are problematic for analog modeling. For mixtures of PDMS and BaSO4, the significance of the elastic component increases with increasing filler content, and accordingly, these mixtures have a limited application for modeling of viscous deformation. Pure PDMS and Rhodorsil Gomme exhibit Newtonian flow behavior at strain rates commonly used in analog modeling. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.