Rahul Sharma

Meso-scale DEM for flowability assessment of weakly consolidated fine powders in industry

Host Institutions

University of Salerno [ 24 months ]
University of Edinburgh [ 12 months ]

Closing Date:

Monday 26, April 2021


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The project aims to find a relationship between self-aggregation and the flow properties of fine cohesive powders in weakly compacted states, which creates difficulties in handling and processing of industrial powders.

Specific objectives are:
  1. Test powders under controlled conditions to study aggregate size and shape evolution and the ensuing powder flow properties;
  2. Use artificially aggregated powders to verify the effects of powder agglomeration and the resulting flow properties at low consolidation;
  3. Develop, calibrate and validate a meso-DEM model at the aggregate scale to verify if a meso-scale approach can reproduce the relevant powder flow behaviour experimentally determined in small dosing hoppers or drying and granulation units.
Expected Results:
  1. A model capable of relating the different aggregation states of the powder and the relationship to its flow properties;
  2. A novel measurement procedure for powder flow properties which includes a powder preparation step relevant to low consolidation and a powder measurement step that is able to catch the significant powder properties;
  3. Calibrated and validated meso-scale DEM of self-aggregating cohesive fine powders.

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