Numerical Modeling of Bulk Solids Flow Using the DEM Approach

This paper was produced for the 2019 NAFEMS World Congress in Quebec Canada

Resource Abstract

The development of the continuum plasticity approach more than 50 years ago by the pioneering work of Dr. Andrew Jenike enabled the flow of bulk solids to be predicted in planar and axi-symmetric Mass Flow hoppers. Velocity and stress fields could be calculated, which provided an understanding of the boundary between Mass Flow and Funnel Flow regimes in hoppers. Arching, ratholing, flow in silos or bins with inserts, two-phase flow and solids-induced loads, to name a few items, could be solved by the approach of flow properties testing followed by analytical design. All this ensured reliable flow which previously could not be predicted.

Many problems were solved and continue to be solved to this day based on the continuum approach. As the solids handling field has evolved, our desire to solve more complex problems has evolved with it. Non-symmetric designs, storage containers with complex inserts, pulsatile flow, mixing and blending, dynamic loadings, transfer chute plugging, spillage and wear, free-surface problems, and especially moving boundary problems that are not possible or easy to solve with the continuum approach can now be examined via the Discrete Element Method (DEM) approach.

But… While the DEM approach is a very powerful tool, it’s correct development, bulk solids flow properties calibration, and model verification and validation are critical in ensuring that the predicted bulk solids flow mimics reality. By way of example, we show how the correct implementation of the DEM approach is increasing able to mimic complex real-life scenarios.

Document Details

AuthorEsaki. M
Date 18th June 2019
OrganisationJenike & Johanson Ltd


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