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Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys. 2001 Jul;64(1 Pt 1):011306. Epub 2001 Jun 27.

Vibration-induced jamming transition in granular media.

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  • 1Institut de Génie Atomique, Département de Physique, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.


The quasistatic frequency response of a granular medium is measured by a forced torsion oscillator method, with forcing frequency f(p) in the range 10(-4) Hz to 5 Hz, while weak vibrations at high-frequency f(s), in the range 50 Hz to 200 Hz, are generated by an external shaker. The intensity of vibration Gamma is below the fluidization limit. A loss factor peak is observed in the oscillator response as a function of Gamma or f(p). In a plot of ln f(p) against 1/Gamma, the position of the peak follows an Arrhenius-like behavior over four orders of magnitude in f(p). The data can be described as a stochastic hopping process involving a probability factor exp(-Gamma(j)/Gamma) with Gamma(j) a f(s)-dependent characteristic vibration intensity. An f(s)-independent description is given by exp(-tau(j)/tau), with tau(j) an intrinsic characteristic time, and tau=Gamma(n)/2pif(s), n=0.5-0.6, an empirical control parameter with unit of time. tau is seen as the effective average time during which the perturbed grains can undergo structural rearrangement. The loss factor peak appears as a crossover in the dynamic behavior of the vibrated granular system, which, at the time scale 1/f(p), is solid-like at low Gamma, and the oscillator is jammed into the granular material, and is fluid-like at high Gamma, where the oscillator can slide viscously.

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