Statistical Properties of Dense Granular Matter
We review recent work characterizing force fluctuations and transmission in dense granular materials. These forces are carried preferentially on filimentary structures known as force chains. When a system is deformed, these chains tend to resist further deformation; with continued deformation, chains break and rearrange, leading to large spatio-temporal fluctuations. We first consider experiments on force fluctuations, diffusion and mobility under steady-state shear. We then turn to force transmission in static systems as determined by the response to a small point force. These experiments show that the packing structure and friction play important roles in determining the force transmission. Disordered highly frictional packings have responses that are similar to that of an elastic solid. Ordered packings show responses that may be described either by anisotropic elasticity or by a wave-like description.
KeywordsFluctuations Granular Materials Force Transmission
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