Packing of fine particles in an electrical field

Siyuan Eric Yang, Kejun J Dong, Ruiping Zou, Aibing Yu, Jun Guo

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21 Citations (Scopus)


A numerical model based on the Discrete Element Method (DEM) is developed to study the packing of fine particles in an electrical field related to the dust collection in an electrostatic precipitator (ESP). The particles are deposited to form a dust cake mainly under the electrical and van der Waals forces. It is shown that for the packing formed by mono-sized charged particles, increasing either particle size or applied electrical field strength increases packing density until reaching a limit corresponding to the density of random loose packing obtained under gravity. The corresponding structural changes are analyzed in terms of coordination number, radial distribution function and other topological and metric properties generated from the Voronoi tessellation. It is shown that these properties are similar to those for the packing under gravity. Such structural similarities result from the similar changes in the competition of the cohesive forces and the driving force in the packing. In particular, it is shown that by replacing the gravity with the electrical field force, the previous correlation between packing density and the ratio of the cohesive force to the packing-driven force can be applied to the packing of fine particles in ESP.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467 - 476
Number of pages10
JournalGranular Matter
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

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