Granular species segregation under vertical tapping: effects of size, density, friction, and shaking amplitude

Phys Rev Lett. 2006 Feb 10;96(5):058001. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.96.058001. Epub 2006 Feb 8.


We present extensive molecular dynamics simulations on species segregation in a granular mixture subject to vertical taps. We discuss how grain properties, e.g., size, density, friction, as well as shaking properties, e.g., amplitude and frequency, affect such a phenomenon. Both the Brazil nut effect (larger particles on the top, BN) and the reverse Brazil nut effect (larger particles on the bottom, RBN) are found and we derive the system comprehensive "segregation diagram" and the BN to RBN crossover line. We also discuss the role of friction and show that particles which differ only for their frictional properties segregate in states depending on the tapping acceleration and frequency.