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An analysis of periodic discharge of powder from a cylindrical vessel

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When cohesive powder in a cylindrical vessel discharges from an outlet, periodic collapsing phenomenon is often observed. The mechanism of ideal periodic flow is theoretically analyzed as follows. Assuming that powder confined to the vessel tends to behave as masses rather than as separate particles due to cohesive and frictional interparticle forces, a simplified block-flow model is considered after Shinohara et al. Powders directly above the outlet first begin to discharge as agglomerated cylindrical blocks of diameter equivalent to that of the outlet. Thus a hypothetical yield plane develops vertically around the block side and horizontally between the discoidal blocks. The block height is determined from a force balance using the cohesive shear strength, tensile strength, bulk density and the geometrical factors of the vessel, e.g. the outlet radius, etc. Based on the above model, an equation of motion of the block during discharge is derived and solved for the case of powders with comparatively small values of internal friction coefficient and cohesive shear and tensile strengths. The solution gives the dynamic state of the block leading to a sinusoidal fluctuation of discharge. The effect of the negative pressure in the space directly above the upper side of the block is also involved here.

Affiliations: 1: Yamawaki Gakuen Junior College, Akasaka 4-10-36, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107, Japan


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