Farzine Nasseri


Dr. M.H.B. (Farzine) Nasseri has a Ph.D. in rock mechanics, and is a licensed Professional Engineer in Ontario. He has 20 years of research, teaching and consulting experiences in the field of rock mechanics. His research interest involves in understanding the factors affecting fracture initiation and propagation under various stress regimes and scales. Characterization of petrofabric structures, evaluation of fracture toughness of rocks, measurements of fluid flow and transport properties in rocks and laboratory acoustic/seismic velocities measurements and their analysis are some of the tools used by him to explore the interdisciplinary relationship among the rock mechanics, rock physics and engineering seismology.

Application areas

Petroleum geomechanics, nuclear waste repositories, underground openings, drilling and blasting and slope stability.


Ph.D. (1993) Rock mechanics, Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi, India.

Research Interests

  1. Application of structural geology on stability of slopes, underground openings and mineralization.
  2. Experimental studies of strength and deformational responses of anisotropic rocks and its application to prediction of strength and defomational responses of rock masses.
  3. Experimental evaluation of coupled hydro-thermo-mechanical properties of rocks and its application to nuclear waste repositories and geothermal energy.

Structural Geology

  • Geological field mapping in lower Himalayas, analysis of fold system near thrust systems, analysis of enechelone/sigmoidal vein systems and their relationship with main principal stress direction in a thrust zone, analysis of joint systems in regional scale
  • Analogue modeling techniques in structural geology, hot orogeny and strain partitioning in crustal zone using vice models;http://basalt.geology.utoronto.ca/tectonicslab/Vice.html

Rock Mechanics, Rock Physics and Engineering Seismology

  • Field mapping and investigation of discontinuities to determine/evaluate rock mass parameters and engineering classification of rock masses
  • Numerical modeling of underground tunnels and caverns
  • Laboratory and experimental approach to quantify the strength and deformational properties of anisotropic rocks; development of anisotropic failure criteria
  • Characterization of micro structural fabrics and their influences on fracture toughness/roughness anisotropy
  • Characterization of fracture damage zone under tensile and shear stress regimes
  • Acoustic emission activity and seismic wave velocity measurements in rocks under mode I failure of rocks
  • Laboratory observation of pre to post brittle failure of rocks: acoustic emission and transport properties of thermally treated rock specimens
  • Physico-mechanical and seismic responses of carbonates rocks under hydrostatic and deviatoric stresses

Future Research Plans

  • Fluid flow measurements in rocks under true triaxial testing environment: measurements of axial and lateral permeability under various principal stresses and foliation plane directions
  • Application of engineering seismology techniques to evaluate the strength and deformational behavior of jointed rock specimens under triaxial and true triaxial testing set up
  • Hydro-fracturing experiments under true triaxial set up
  • Evaluation of fracture toughness index under confinement in true triaxial set up


Experimenting induced seismicity phenomena using Geophysical Imaging triaxial cell at RFDF

A preliminary report by M.H.B. Nasseri and S. Lui Research objective: Research investigation on understanding of the triggered or induced seismicity have recently been the focus of many investigators in relation to hydraulic fracturing practice associated with the unconventional oil and gas production industry in North America. Such projects usually involve recording and processing of […]

3D-Permeability in Jointed Sandstone within True-triaxial Cell

The testing plan was for a study to evaluate the transport properties of the proposed sandstone specimens under steady state method to be tested within geophysical imaging true-triaxial testing set up at rock fracture dynamic facility, University of Toronto. This study was designed to measure the transport properties and seismic wave velocities of the tight […]

Acoustic Emission Source Parameters

At the largest scale, fractures give rise to volcanoes and earthquakes and at engineering scales they form pathways for fluids to flow through and reduce the strength of rock. For these reasons, the study of rock fractures has been a major focus of research in the mining, petroleum and civil engineering industries for decades. To […]

Thermo-Hydro-Mechanical Properties of Cobourg Limestone

  The demand for underground radioactive waste repositories makes  the study of thermo-hydro-mechanical (THM) processes in rocks an increasingly important topic. In collaboration with the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO) we  conducted triaxial deformation experiments on Cobourg limestone, an argillaceous sedimentary rock found in Southern Ontario, Canada. Experiments were conducted at a constant confining pressure of 12.5 MPa where […]

True-Triaxial Testing

The heart of the Rock Fracture Dynamics Facility is a technologically advanced true-triaxial computer controlled rock deformation system with integral permeability measurement and geophysical imaging capability. For the first time, it is possible to carry out multi-axis thermo-mechanical, geophysical, and hydrological measurements essentially simultaneously on rock specimens ranging from hard rock such as granite to weak rocks undergoing […]

Hydraulic Fracturing

Hydraulic fracturing is the initiation and propagation of a fracture by means of fluid pressurization. Hydraulic fracturing has grown in popularity over the past couple of decades in response to increasing public demand for energy alternatives, the discovery of large oil and gas reservoirs in North America and the growing demand for minerals. The objective […]


Employment History

  • April 2007-  System Testing Engineer, Experimental Geoscientist, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Toronto
  • Feb 2004 - Research Associate, University of Toronto, Lassonde Institute.
  • 1999 - Present - Research Associate, University of Toronto, Dept. of Civil Engineering and  Department of Geology.
  • June 93-Aug 98  -Assistant Professor, University of Tarbiat Modaress, Department of Mining Engineering, Rock Mechanics Group, Tehran, Iran.
  • Jan 94-98 - Rock Engineering and Rock Mechanics specialist at RahShar Architectural and Hydraulics Consulting Engineers Tehran, Iran as part time consultant.


Farzine Nasseri
Rock Fracture Dynamics Facility
Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering
University of Toronto
35 St. George St.
Toronto, Ontario
Canada, M5S 1A4

Room SF1009

Tel: 416-946-7333