Universal aspects of cohesion

Susan Y. Lehman, Lilianna E. Christman, D. T. Jacobs, Nathan S.D.E.F. Johnson, Paroma Palchoudhuri, Catherine E. Tieman, Avi Vajpeyi, Elliot R. Wainwright, Justine E. Walker, Ian S. Wilson, Michael LeBlanc, Louis W. McFaul, Jonathan T. Uhl, Karin A. Dahmen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Universal aspects of the effect of cohesion are explored by a combination of experiments and modeling. Experimentally, we observe the avalanching behavior of a granular bead pile while varying the cohesion, and we find these experimental results to be closely matched by the results of a simple theoretical model of a completely different system. In both cases, cohesion can lead to catastrophically large avalanches that recur almost periodically. The effects of cohesion on the statistics and the time series properties of the experimental avalanches correspond closely to the effect of dynamic weakening on the slip avalanches in a simple model used both for earthquakes and the plastic deformation of brittle solids. These results suggest a large universality class for avalanche statistics spanning systems with different material specifics and system geometry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number35
JournalGranular Matter
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Avalanches
  • Critical behavior
  • Granular materials
  • Mean field theory
  • Scaling behaviour
  • Universality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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