, 35:105

Stuck in traffic: Patterns of powder adhesion

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Abstract

The adhesion of fine particles to surfaces is important for applications ranging from drug delivery to fouling of solar cells. In this letter, we show that powder adhesion can occur in unexpected patterns, concentrating particular grain types in some locations and clearing them from others, and we propose a straightforward traffic model that appears to reproduce many of the behaviors seen. The model predicts different patterns depending on inter-particle cohesion, and we find in both experiment and model that adhesion occurs in three distinct stages.