Particle Segregation in Dense Granular Flows

John Mark Nicholas Timm Gray
  • Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics, January 2018, Annual Reviews
  • DOI: 10.1146/annurev-fluid-122316-045201

Particle Segregation in Dense Granular Flows

What is it about?

Granular materials composed of particles with differing grain sizes, densities, shapes, or surface properties may experience unexpected segregation during flow. This review focuses on kinetic sieving and squeeze expulsion, whose combined effect produces the dominant gravity-driven segregation mechanism in dense sheared flows. Shallow granular avalanches that form at the surface of more complex industrial flows such as heaps, silos, and rotating drums provide ideal conditions for particles to separate, with large particles rising to the surface and small particles percolating down to the base. When this is combined with erosion and deposition, amazing patterns can form in the underlying substrate. Gravity-driven segregation and velocity shear induce differential lateral transport, which may be thought of as a secondary segregation mechanism. This allows larger particles to accumulate at flow fronts, and if they are more frictional than the fine grains, they can feedback on the bulk flow, causing flow fingering, levee formation, and longer runout of geophysical mass flows.

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The following have contributed to this page: Professor John M N T Gray