Graduate Research School Available Projects Shear Cell Test and Bulk Materials Handling

Shear Cell Test and Bulk Materials Handling

Title of Project

Shear Cell Test and Bulk Materials Handling


Dr Greg Wheatley

College or Research Centre

College of Science & Engineering

Summary of Project

Analysing flow properties of bulk materials is essential when it comes to designing their respective storage units. Understanding the characteristics of the material such as density, area and moisture content is crucial as the way each particle interacts with one another can affect the overall flow ability of the material leaving the storage unit. The Hopper and Bin design is the most commonly used technique of storing materials as it is a gravity fed system and is generally used for storing materials such as agricultural grains as well as mined minerals such as sand and coal. The Hopper is the bottom section of a bin where the bulk material exits and its overall optimum design must be considered with the bulk material properties. Generally, there are three types of bulk material flow: Mass Flow, Funnel Flow and Expanded Flow that all depend on the materials composition as well as the flow properties of the design. Mass flow, which is ideally the most desired flow type sees the bulk material travel uniformly with all particles in motion until all the material leaves the bin. The other types of flow generally occur with flat-bottomed bins with shallow hoppers are not seen as ideal as with this design problems such as arching and rat holing occur. This project centres on optimal design of equipment and bulk materials handling in general for certain bulk materials that can dramatically change their properties with changes in moisture, particle size, or the chemical composition that can occur in the mine, etc.

Key Words

Modelling; Laboratory testing; prototype testing

Would suit an applicant who

has a sound academic background, research experience, an interest in civil and mechanical engineering and strong experimental and computational skills.

Updated: 21 May 2020