Interlocking of non-convex particles

Grain sizes and shapes are relevant features when studying the physical properties of granular systems. This is the reason why many industries focus their efforts into technologies for controlling / measuring particle morphologies.

In a recent article, we demonstrate that non-convex particles present multiple contacts, therefore deeply modifying the physics of random packing. Non trivial effects are evidenced. Among others, non-convex grains lead to low density random packings which exhibit more stability than random sphere assemblies ! This is due to the interlocking of grains, i.e. the development of highly connected force networks in the grain structure.

F.Ludewig and N.Vandewalle, Phys. Rev. E 85, 051307 (2012) – PDF

UPDATE : a similar study with U-shaped grains has been published recently.

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About nicovdw

Professor in Physics
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One Response to Interlocking of non-convex particles

  1. Pingback: 3d printing revolution in the lab | GRASP | Soft Matter | University of Liège

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