The effect of particle deformation on the rheology and microstructure of noncolloidal suspensions
Clausen, Jonathan Ryan
MetadataShow full item record
In order to study suspensions of deformable particles, a hybrid numerical technique was developed that combined a lattice-Boltzmann (LB) fluid solver with a finite element (FE) solid-phase solver. The LB method accurately recovered Navier-Stokes hydrodynamics, while the linear FE method accurately modeled deformation of fluid-filled elastic capsules for moderate levels of deformation. The LB/FE technique was extended using the Message Passing Interface (MPI) to allow scalable simulations on leading-class distributed memory supercomputers. An extensive series of validations were conducted using model problems, and the LB/FE method was found to accurately capture proper capsule dynamics and fluid hydrodynamics. The dilute-limit rheology was studied, and the individual normal stresses were accurately measured. An extension to the analytical theory for viscoelastic spheres [R. Roscoe. J. Fluid Mech., 28(02):273-93, 1967] was proposed that included the isotropic pressure disturbance. Single-body deformation was found to have a small negative (tensile) effect on the particle pressure. Next, the rheology and microstructure of dense suspensions of elastic capsules were probed in detail. As elastic deformation was introduced to the capsules, the rheology exhibited rapid changes. Moderate amounts of shear thinning were observed, and the first normal stress difference showed a rapid increase from a negative value for the rigid case, to a positive value for moderate levels of deformation. The particle pressure also demonstrated a decrease in compressive stresses as deformation increased. The corresponding changes in microstructure were quantified. Changes in particle self-diffusivity were also noted.