The base pressure distribution underneath a granular pile is carefully investigated using the discrete element method. Simulations were performed using both spherical and non-spherical particles in several numerical models of granular piles. A pressure profile with a significant pressure dip under the apex was predicted for all three models under certain conditions. The spherical assembly appears to produce a more erratic pressure profile with a less significant pressure dip than the non-spherical particles. The history of the pile preparation is shown to be important whilst the base deflection is shown to be not a requirement for the dip to form. The results are in good agreement with some published experimental observations. The issue of lengthscale in terms of the dimension of the charging source relative to the dimension of the pile is explored. The granular fabric in terms of the magnitude of contact force, the contact orientation and the particle orientation within a granular pile have also been described. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
- FORCE FLUCTUATIONS
- SANDPILE FORMATION