The stochastic nature of the DFN process is such that there is an infinite, but equally probable, number of possible realisations of the 2D fracture systems based on the specified input parameters. Ideally, synthetic rock mass modelling should include the numerical testing of multiple DFN realizations to ensure better characterisation of the variability related to the input DFN network. Such an approach potentially requires large computational runtimes to test a minimum representative number of synthetic rock masses based on the same DFN statistics. To aid in both selection and reduction in the number of synthetic rock mass geomechanical models required, we have developed a web-based tool, DFNAnalyzer, which allows extraction of detailed information about each DFN realization including for example, areal facture intensity and density, number of fracture intersections, and fracture connectivity. As there exists in the published literature no accepted standard as to what would constitute a minimum number of DFN realizations to be used in synthetic rock mass models, the authors believe the proposed DFNAnalyzer can assist the engineer in characterizing the similarity of 2D DFN networks. For example, by plotting connectivity maps, practitioners can easily compare 2D DFN realizations and select those with the low similarity for testing within geomechanical models and thereby provide a range for the potential mechanical behavior of the rock mass. Use of the developed DFNAnalyzer will reduce the subjectivity in the selection of DFN models used in numerical analysis and hence lead to more representative modelling/design.

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