Tivadar Pongó et al The role of the particle aspect ratio in the discharge
of a narrow silo. 2022 New J. Phys. 24 103036. 10.1088/1367-2630/ac9923
The time evolution of silo discharge is investigated for different granular materials made of spherical or elongated grains in laboratory experiments and with discrete element model (DEM) calculations. For spherical grains, we confirm the widely known typical behavior with constant discharge rate (except for initial and final transients). For elongated particles with aspect ratios between 2 < L/d < 6.1, we find a peculiar flow rate increase for larger orifices before the end of the discharge process. While the flow field is practically homogeneous for spherical grains, it has strong gradients for elongated particles with a fast-flowing region in the middle of the silo surrounded by a stagnant zone. For large enough orifice sizes, the flow rate increase is connected with a suppression of the stagnant zone, resulting in an increase in both the packing fraction and flow velocity near the silo outlet within a certain parameter range.