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Influence of Pore Fluid on Grain‐Scale Interactions and Mobility of Granular Flows of Differing Volume

Taylor‐Noonan, Alexander M.; Bowman, Elisabeth T.; McArdell, Brian W.; Kaitna, Roland; McElwaine, Jim N.; Take, W. Andy

Influence of Pore Fluid on Grain‐Scale Interactions and Mobility of Granular Flows of Differing Volume Thumbnail


Alexander M. Taylor‐Noonan

Elisabeth T. Bowman

Brian W. McArdell

Roland Kaitna

W. Andy Take


The presence of a pore fluid is recognized to significantly increase the mobility of saturated over dry granular flows. However, the mechanisms through which pore fluid increases mobility may not be captured in experimental flows of small volume typical of laboratory conditions. Here we present the results of dry and initially fluid saturated or “wet” experimental flows of near-monodisperse coarse-grained ceramic particles in a large laboratory flume for five source volumes of 0.2–1.0 m3. Measurements include flow height, velocity profile, pore pressure, and evolving solid volume fraction, as well as the final deposit shape. The dry experiments constrain the frictional properties of the common granular material and comparison with wet flows permits an independent evaluation of the interstitial fluid effects. These results demonstrate that flow dilation and strong variation in the velocity profile are directly linked to a greatly increased mobility for wet granular flows compared to dry, and a significant influence of scale as controlled by source volume on flow behavior. Excess pore pressure need not be present for these effects to occur.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 23, 2022
Online Publication Date Dec 2, 2022
Publication Date 2022-12
Deposit Date Nov 2, 2023
Publicly Available Date Nov 2, 2023
Journal Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface
Print ISSN 2169-9003
Electronic ISSN 2169-9011
Publisher American Geophysical Union
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 127
Issue 12
Public URL


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