Rising and sinking intruders in dense granular flows

Lu Jing, Julio M. Ottino, Richard M. Lueptow*, Paul B. Umbanhowar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


We computationally determine the net bed force on single spherical intruder particles in dense granular flows as a function of particle size, particle density, shear rate, overburden pressure, and gravity. A simple buoyancy-like scaling law is recovered (analogous to that in fluids), but with a scale factor that depends on the particle size ratio due to discrete contacts. Comparing the bed force with the intruder weight results in predictions of whether an intruder rises or sinks that agree with data from various independent experiments of free surface granular flows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number022069
JournalPhysical Review Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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