We study the response of dry granular materials to external stress using experiment, simulation, and theory. We derive a Ginzburg-Landau functional that enforces mechanical stability and positivity of contact forces. In this framework, the elastic moduli depend only on the applied stress. A combination of this feature and the positivity constraint leads to stress correlations whose shape and magnitude are extremely sensitive to the nature of the applied stress. The predictions from the theory describe the stress correlations for both simulations and experiments semiquantitatively.
|Physical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
|Published - 28 Dec 2009
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