Dr. Neil Balmforth

Granular Flow:

The continuum-like mechanics of a granular media is poorly understood, but I have been enjoying it with Richard Kerswell, Jim McElwaine, Ian Hewitt and others. I spent two summers scattering glass balls and sand all over the Coastal Research Lab at Woods Hole and rotated a drum for months on end at UBC to learn something about this problem

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Rich and Neil
Dambreak experiments in a granular medium (with Richard Kerswell)
(A swinging gate, suddenly drawn back, releases a pile of grit in a slot that slumps down to the right)
Drum experiments
(At faster rotation rates, there is continuous flow - rolling)
(with Jim McElwaine)
(Episodic avalanching arises for higher rotation rate - slumping)
Granular slumps
Rotating drums
Rolling on sand

Department of Mathematics / Fluid Labs / Neil Balmforth / Research Interests