Pluymakers, A.M.H.


TU Delft (2018 - current)
In January 2018 I started with a post-doc, investigating the effect of pore fluid chemistry on subcritical crack growth in limestone. This is a VENI-project, funded by NWO (the Dutch Research Council).

University of Oslo (2015 - 2017)

In January 2015 I started a post-doc in close collaboration with Prof. Fran çois Renard and Prof. Dag Dysthe on the broad theme of fluid-rock interactions. This project was part of ShaleSeq, a Polish-Norwegian collaboration on the potential of CO2 to enhance gas production in shale, funded by NRC (the Norwegian Research Council).

Utrecht University (2005 - 2014)

After obtaining a BSc and MSc in Earth Sciences at Utrecht University, I started late 2010 with a PhD in Experimental Rock Mechanics at the High Pressure Temperature lab, supervised by Prof. Chris Spiers. My PhD thesis is titled ' Frictional and sealing behavior of simulated anhydrite fault gouge - Effects of CO2 and implications for fault stability and caprock integrity'. This project formed part of CATO2, a multidisciplinary research project investigating multiple aspects of CO2 capture, transport and storage. It was funded by government and industry both.

Summary of Veni project

The VENI-project is titled: 'Taking fluid-rock interactions forward: the role of realistic pore fluid chemistry on rock deformation'

Fluid-rock-interaction is traditionally one of the main research themes in Earth Sciences. However, so far, a majority of experimental rock mechanics studies used chemically simple solutions, which neglects the effect of realistic pore fluid constituents. We need a true understanding of the role of fluid chemistry on the mechanical and transport properties of rocks, since the use of the subsurface (hydrocarbon production, geothermal heat extraction, CO2 or wastewater injection) affects the pore fluid chemistry.

I propose to address this lack of understanding by determining how realistic natural and anthropogenic pore fluids affect rock strength, the development of fracture networks and their transport properties. To this end, I will perform different sets of rock deformation experiments on limestone with systematically varied pore fluid chemistry.

This type of understanding will have implications for the hydrocarbon and geothermal energy industries, industries which make use of the deep subsurface. Apart from the industrial importance, there is a wide range of academic applications, from understanding the slow movement of rocks under load to frictional processes, and from strain localization to earthquake nucleation and propagation.


  • Pluymakers, A., Liu, J., Kohler, F., Renard, F., Dysthe, D., accepted, A high resolution interferometric method to measure local swelling due to CO2 exposure in coal and shale, International Journal of Coal Geology
  • Pluymakers, A. and Røyne, A., 2017, Weathering-resistant nanogranular coating in fault mirrors requires slip to form, Earth and Planetary Science Letters 476, 59–68
  • Pluymakers, A., Kobchenko, M., Renard, F., 2017, ‘How microfracture roughness can be used to distinguish between exhumed cracks and in-situ flow paths in shales’, J. Struct. Geol. 94, 87-97
  • Rohmer, J., Pluymakers, A., Renard, F., 2016, Mechano-chemical interactions in sedimentary rocks in the context of CO2 storage: Weak acid, weak effects? Earth-Science Reviews 157, 86-110
  • Pluymakers, A., Niemeijer, A., Spiers, C., 2016. Frictional properties of simulated anhydrite-dolomite fault gouge and implications for seismogenic potential. J. Struct. Geol. 84, 31–46
  • Bohloli, B., Choi, J.C. , Skurtveit, E. and Pluymakers, A., 2016, ‘Geomechanical interpretation for micro-seismic potential during injection tests at CO2 storage pilot on Svalbard, Norway’, Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering: From the Past to the Future, Edited by Ulusay, R. Aydan, Ö., Gerçek, H., Hindistan A. and Tuncay, E., Taylor & Francis Group, CRC Press, pp. 1309–1313
  • Pluymakers, A., Niemeijer, A., 2015. Healing and sliding stability of simulated anhydrite fault gouge: Effects of water, temperature and CO2. Tectonophysics 656, 111–130.
  • Pluymakers, A., Spiers, C., 2015. Compaction creep of simulated anhydrite fault gouge by pressure solution: Theory vs. experiments and implications for fault sealing. Geol. Soc. London, Spec. Publ. 409, 107–124.
  • Pluymakers, A., Samuelson, J., Niemeijer, A.,Spiers, C., 2014b. Effects of temperature and CO2 on the frictional behavior of simulated anhydrite fault rock. J. Geophys. Res. Solid Earth 119, 8728–8747. Pluymakers, A., Peach, C., Spiers, C., 2014a. Diagenetic compaction experiments on simulated anhydrite fault  g ouge under static conditions. J. Geophys. Res. B5, 4123–4148.
  • Hangx, S.J.T., Pluymakers, A., ten Hove, A., Spiers, C.J., 2014. Effects of lateral variations in rock composition  and texture on anhydrite caprock integrity of CO2 storage systems. Int. J. Rock Mech. Min. Sci. 69, 80–92.

Anne Pluymakers