Rheology of Geophysical Shear Systems Through the Lens of Granular Physics

Stephanie Taylor

UC Santa Cruz

Date & Time
Building 3, Rambo Auditorium
Jeanne Hardebeck

Granular materials like sands, muds, soils, pebbles, boulders, and ground up rock are central to a wide range of earth science processes, and such natural shear flows are composed of particles exhibiting a range of irregular shapes, sizes, and material properties. For natural hazards involving granular media, like landslides and earthquakes, it is important to understand how the complexity of natural grains affects the transition between nearly static slow moving shear flow and fast moving shear flow. Laboratory experiments using naturalistic granular materials (e.g. angular sand instead of spherical beads) explore the effect of grain shape and material properties on the boundaries and transitions between these rheological regimes, looking to answer an enduring physics question of how energy entering a granular system is dissipated.

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