Experimental and numerical investigation of the temperature response to stress changes of rocks

Xiaoqiu Yang*, Weiren Lin, Osamu Tadai, Xin Zeng, Chuanhai Yu, En Chao Yeh, Haibing Li, Huan Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The temperature response to stress changes of rocks is key to understanding temperature anomalies in geoscience phenomena such as earthquakes. We developed a new hydrostatic compression system in which the rock specimen center can achieve adiabatic conditions during the first ~10 s following rapid loading or unloading and systematically measured several representative sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic rocks sampled from two seismogenic zones (the Longmenshan Fault Zone in Sichuan and the Chelungpu Fault Zone (TCDP Hole-A) in Taiwan) and several quarries worldwide. We built a finite element model of heat conduction to confirm the measured results of temperature response to stress changes of rocks. The results show that (1) the adiabatic pressure derivative of the temperature (β) for most crustal rocks is ~1.5 mK/MPa to 6.2 mK/MPa, (2) the temperature response to stress of sedimentary rocks (~3.5–6.2 mK/MPa) is larger than that of igneous and metamorphic rocks (~2.5–3.2 mK/MPa), and (3) there is good linear correlation between β (in mK/MPa) and the bulk modulus K (in GPa): β = (−0.068K + 5.69) ± 0.4, R2 = 0.85. This empirical equation will be very useful for estimating the distribution of β in the crust, because K can be calculated when profiles of crustal density (ρ) and elastic wave velocities (Vp, Vs) are obtained from gravity surveys and seismic exploration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5101-5117
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jul


  • Chelungpu fault zone
  • Longmenshan fault zone
  • adiabatic pressure derivative
  • hydrostatic compression
  • rock temperature response
  • stress change

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)


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