Discrete element method simulation of properties of a 3D conical hopper with mono-sized spheres


H. Saxén, Y. Yu




Advanced Powder Technology



The velocity distribution and flow pattern of particles in hoppers during discharging process are of great significance when granular materials are handled in the industry, e.g., in the charging of the ironmaking blast furnace. This paper studies the flow of mono-sized glass particles and the effect of the coefficient of static friction of particle-wall on flow pattern and velocity distribution in a 3D conical hopper using the discrete element method (DEM). The validity of the calculated results was confirmed by comparing them with experimental results reported in the literature. The results show that DEM can be used to predict the behavior of the particles during hopper discharging. Particles were found to have the same velocity in almost the whole area of the hopper except in the conical orifice zone and the movement was controlled by the angular velocity during the discharging process. The flow pattern changes from mass flow to funnel flow and the wall shear layer becomes larger and wider with the increase of coefficient of static friction of particle-wall. The effect of coefficient of static friction of particle-wall on velocity distribution at wall area is obvious.


Discrete element method, Flow pattern, Hopper, Velocity distribution

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