Clustering and viscosity in a shear flow of a particulate suspension

Pasi Raiskinmäki, J. Åström, Markku Kataja, M. Latva-Kokko, Antti Koponen, A. Jäsberg, A. Shakib-Mansh, J. Timonen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


    A shear flow of particulate suspension is analyzed for the qualitative effect of particle clustering on viscosity using a simple kinetic clustering model and direct numerical simulations. The clusters formed in a Couette flow can be divided into rotating chainlike clusters and layers of particles at the channel walls. The size distribution of the rotating clusters is scale invariant in the small-cluster regime and decreases rapidly above a characteristic length scale that diverges at a jamming transition. The behavior of the suspension can qualitatively be divided into three regimes. For particle Reynolds number Rep≲0.1, viscosity is controlled by the characteristic cluster size deduced from the kinetic clustering model. For
    Rep∼1, clustering is maximal, but the simple kinetic model becomes inapplicable presumably due to onset of instabilities. In this transition regime viscosity begins to increase. For Rep≳10, inertial effects become important, clusters begin to breakup, and suspension displays shear thickening. This phenomenon may be attributed to enhanced contribution of solid phase in the total shear stress.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number061403
    Number of pages3
    JournalPhysical Review E: Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2003
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • flow shear
    • shear
    • shear properties
    • suspensions
    • viscosity


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