loading page

Effect of Grain Shape and Relative Humidity on the Nonlinear Elastic Properties of Granular Media
  • Linying Gao,
  • Parisa Shokouhi,
  • Jacques Rivière
Linying Gao
The Pennsylvania State University

Corresponding Author:lzg245@psu.edu

Author Profile
Parisa Shokouhi
Pennsylvania State University
Author Profile
Jacques Rivière
Pennsylvania State University
Author Profile


This study focuses on unraveling the microphysical origins of the nonlinear elastic effects, which are pervasive in the Earth’s crust. Here, we examine the influence of grain shape on the elastic nonlinearity of granular assemblies. We find that the elastic nonlinearity of angular sand particles is of the same order of magnitude as that previously measured in spherical glass beads. However, while the elastic nonlinearity of glass beads increases by an order of magnitude with RH, that of sand particles is rather RH independent. We attribute this difference to the angularity of sand particles: absorbed water on the spherical grains weakens the junctions making them more nonlinear, while no such effect occurs in sand due to grain interlocking. Additionally, for one of the nonlinear parameters that likely arises from shearing/partial slip of the grain junctions, we observe a sharp amplitude threshold in sand which is not observed in glass beads.
22 Feb 2023Submitted to ESS Open Archive
27 Feb 2023Published in ESS Open Archive