ABSTRACT: In this Letter we report spontaneous pattern formation in dense granular assemblies confined to a Hele-Shaw cell and quasistatic regime. Varied unexpected patterns, ranging from rounded to fingered, are observed due to the displacement of one granular material by another. Computer simulations reproduce the major features observed in these experiments. Two mechanisms are responsible for the pattern formation: crystallization of the injected grains and plastic deformation of the displaced grains. The experiment suggests analogies with viscous fingering and jamming transition experiments.
Physical Review Letters 09/2007; 99(6):068001. · 7.37 Impact Factor