Detalle Publicación

Anchoring effect of an obstacle in the silo unclogging process

Título de la revista: PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS
ISSN: 0031-9007
Volumen: 131
Número: 9
Páginas: 098201
Fecha de publicación: 2023
Contrary to the proven beneficial role that placing an obstacle above a silo exit has in clogging prevention, we demonstrate that, when the system is gently shaken, this passive element has a twofold effect in the clogging destruction process. On one side, the obstacle eases the destruction of weak arches, a phenomenon that can be explained by the pressure screening that it causes in the outlet proximities. But on the other side, we discover that the obstacle presence leads to the development of a few very strong arches. These arches, which dominate in the heavy tailed distributions of unclogging times, correlate with configurations where the number of particles contacting the obstacle from below are higher than the average; hence suggesting that the obstacle acts as an anchoring point for the granular packing. This finding may help one to understand the ambiguous effect of obstacles in the bottleneck flow of other systems, such as pedestrians evacuating a room or active matter in general