Rock strength and integrity can be described using fracture mechanics principles. Instead of using empirical relations, the explicit fracture initiation, growth and interaction leads to a fracture network in the rock mass which then defines the mechanical behaviour. These fracture mechanics principles are the basis of modelling software which is applied to different examples in this contribution. Using FRACOD2D, a laboratory compression experiment is modelled, the in-situ stress field is estimated from borehole breakouts, the influence of mud pressure on wellbore stability is analysed and hydraulic fracture growth is simulated. It is shown that fracture mechanics has great potential in solving rock mechanics challenges.


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