MC-DEM: a novel simulation scheme for modeling dense granular media

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Behringer, Robert P
Brodu, N

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This article presents a new force model for performing quantitative simulations of dense granular materials. Interactions between multiple contacts (MC) on the same grain are explicitly taken into account. Our readily applicable method retains all the advantages of discrete element method (DEM) simulations and does not require the use of costly finite element methods. The new model closely reproduces our recent experimental measurements, including contact force distributions in full 3D, at all compression levels up to the experimental maximum limit of 13%. Comparisons with traditional non-deformable spheres approach are provided, as well as with alternative models for interactions between multiple contacts. The success of our model compared to these alternatives demonstrates that interactions between multiple contacts on each grain must be included for dense granular packings.

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