Scaling behavior of coarsening Faraday heaps

Henk Jan van Gerner, Ko van der Weele, Devaraj van der Meer, Martin A. van der Hoef

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
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When a layer of sand is vertically shaken, the surface spontaneously breaks up in a landscape of small conical “Faraday heaps,” which merge into larger ones on an ever increasing time scale. We propose a model for the heap dynamics and show analytically that the mean lifetime of the transient state with N heaps scales as N −2 . When there is an abundance of sand, such that the vibrating plate always remains completely covered, this means that the average diameter of the heaps grows as t 1/2 . Otherwise, when the sand is less plentiful and parts of the plate get depleted during the coarsening process, the average diameter of the heaps grows more slowly, namely as t 1/3 . This result compares well with experimental observations.
Original languageEnglish
Article number042203
Pages (from-to)-
Number of pages8
JournalPhysical review E: Statistical, nonlinear, and soft matter physics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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