Motivated by the understanding of shape effects in granular materials, we numerically investigate the macroscopic and microstructural properties of anisotropic dense assemblies of frictionless polydisperse rigid pentagons in shear flow, and compare them with similar systems of disks. Once subjected to large cumulative shear strains their rheology and microstructure are investigated in uniform steady states, depending on inertial number I, which ranges from the quasistatic limit (I similar to 10(-5)) to 0.2. In the quasistatic limit both systems are devoid of Reynolds dilatancy, i.e., flow at their random close packing density. Both macroscopic friction angle., an increasing function of I, and solid fraction., a decreasing function of I, are larger with pentagons than with disks at small I, but the differences decline for larger I and, remarkably, nearly vanish for I similar to 0.2. Under growing I, the depletion of contact networks is considerably slower with pentagons, in which increasingly anisotropic, but still well-connected force-transmitting structures are maintained throughout the studied range. Whereas contact anisotropy and force anisotropy contribute nearly equally to the shear strength in disk assemblies, the latter effect dominates with pentagons at small I, while the former takes over for I of the order of 10(-2). The size of clusters of grains in side-to-side contact, typically comprising more than 10 pentagons in the quasistatic limit, very gradually decreases for growing I.

VL - 4 UR - http://link.springer.com/10.1140/epje/i2018-11608-9 IS - 1 JO - Eur. Phys. J. E ER - TY - JOUR T1 - Internal friction and absence of dilatancy of packings of frictionless polygons JF - Physical Review E Y1 - 2015 A1 - Emilien Azéma A1 - Farhang Radjaï A1 - Jean-Noel Roux AB -By means of numerical simulations, we show that assemblies of frictionless rigid pentagons in slow shear flow possess an internal friction coefficient (equalto0.183±0.008 with our choice of moderately polydisperse grains) but no macroscopic dilatancy. In other words, despite side-side contacts tending to hinder relative particle rotations, the solidfraction under quasistatic shear coincides with that of isotropic random close packings of pentagonal particles. Properties of polygonal grains are thus similar to those of disks in that respect. We argue that continuous reshuffling of the force-bearing network leads to frequent collapsing events at the microscale, thereby causing the macroscopic dilatancy to vanish. Despite such rearrangements, the shear flow favors an anisotropic structure that is at the origin of the ability of the system to sustain shear stress.

VL - 91 IS - 1 JO - Phys. Rev. E ER -