Pore structure of the packing of fine particles

R. Y. Yang, R. P. Zou, A. B. Yu, S. K. Choi

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38 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents a numerical study of the pore structure of fine particles. By means of granular dynamics simulation, packings of mono-sized particles ranging from 1 to 1000 μm are constructed. Our results show that packing density varies with particle size due to the effect of the cohesive van der Waals force. Pores and their connectivity are then analysed in terms of Delaunay tessellation. The geometries of the pores are represented by the size and shape of Delaunay cells and quantified as a function of packing density or particle size. It shows that the cell size decreases and the cell shape becomes more spherical with increasing packing density. A general correlation exists between the size and shape of cells: the larger the cell size relative to particle size, the more spherical the cell shape. This correlation, however, becomes weaker as packing density decreases. The connectivity between pores is represented by throat size and channel length. With decreasing packing density, the throat size increases and the channel length decreases. The pore scale information would be useful to understand and model the transport and mechanical properties of porous media.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)719-725
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Colloid and Interface Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Delaunay tessellation
  • Discrete element method
  • Fine particles
  • Packing
  • Porous media

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