Departmental Seminar

Dynamic X-ray radiography of particle size and shape orientation fields during granular flow

Dr Benjy Marks
University of Sydney

When granular materials flow, the constituent particles segregate by size and align by shape. The impacts of these changes in fabric on the flow itself are not well understood, and thus novel non-invasive means are needed to observe the interior of the material. Here, we propose a new experimental technique using dynamic X-ray radiography to make such measurements possible. The technique is based on Fourier transformation to extract spatiotemporal fields of internal particle size and shape orientation distributions during flow, in addition to complementary measurements of velocity fields through image correlation. We show X-ray radiography captures the bulk flow properties, in contrast to optical methods which typically measure flow within boundary layers, as these are adjacent to any walls. Our results reveal the rich dynamic alignment of particles with respect to streamlines in the bulk during silo discharge, the understanding of which is critical to preventing destructive instabilities and undesirable clogging. The ideas developed in this paper are directly applicable to many other open questions in granular and soft matter systems, such as the evolution of size and shape distributions in foams and biological materials.

Date & time

Fri 17 Nov 2017, 11am–12pm



Le Couteur 3.17


Members of RSPE welcome