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Published August 16, 2011 | Published
Journal Article Open

Highly nonlinear solitary waves in chains of ellipsoidal particles


We study the dynamic response of a one-dimensional chain of ellipsoidal particles excited by a single compressive impulse. We detail the Hertzian contact theory describing the interaction between two ellipsoidal particles under compression, and use it to model the dynamic response of the system. We observe the formation of highly nonlinear solitary waves in the chain, and we also study their propagation properties. We measure experimentally the traveling pulse amplitude (force), the solitary wave speed, and the solitary wave width. We compare these results with theoretical predictions in the long wavelength approximation, and with numerical results obtained with a discrete particle model and with finite element simulations. We also study the propagation of highly nonlinear solitary waves in the chain with particles arranged in different configurations to show the effects of the particle's geometry on the wave propagation characteristics and dissipation. We find very good agreement between experiment, theory, and simulations for all the ranges of impact velocity and particle arrangements investigated.

Additional Information

© 2011 American Physical Society. Received 21 February 2011; revised manuscript received 8 June 2011; published 16 August 2011. We thank Richard E. Baumer for help in experiments. C.D. acknowledges support from the Army Research Office (Proposal No. 54272-EG, and ARO/MURI) and the National Science Foundation (NSF/CMMI-844540-CAREER).

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Published - DucNgo2011p15696Phys_Rev_E.pdf


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