Clogging and unclogging of many-particle systems passing through a bottleneck
1 Departamento de Física, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Navarra, E-31080 Pamplona, Spain
2 Particle Analytics Ltd, Alrick Building, Max Born Crescent, The King’s Buildings, Edinburgh, EH9 3BF, UK
3 Division of Physics and Applied Physics, School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, 25 Nanyang Link, 637371, Singapore
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Published online: 30 June 2017
When a group of discrete particles pass through a narrowing, the flow may become arrested due to the development of structures that span over the size of the aperture. Then, it is said that the system is clogged. Here, we will discuss about the existence of a phase diagram for the clogged state that has been recently proposed, arguing on its usefulness to describe different systems of discrete bodies ranging from granular materials, to colloidal suspensions and live beings. This diagram is built based on the value of a flowing parameter which characterizes the intermittent flow observed in all these discrete systems provided that there is an external or internal energy supply. Such requirement, which is necessary to destabilize the clogging arches, is absent in a standard static silo, which is therefore examined as a particular case. This view will help to understand some a priori inconsistencies concerning the role of driving force in the clogging process that have been found in the last years.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
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