DEM in Industry: Its Growth and Acceptance

  • Del Cid, Liz (Jenike & Johanson, Inc)

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Let’s open the discussion to the growing popularity of the discrete element method (DEM) across various industries. DEM has proven to be an effective computational approach, particularly in the bulk solids handling chute transfer community, for simulating problems that involve collision and deformations of free bodies over large distances. One of the advantages of using DEM is its meshless method, which allows for a variety of simulation problems to be solved for which a continuum method would be a poor choice. The main algorithm of DEM is relatively simple and consists of three steps: contact detection, force detection, and integration. This method incorporates neighborhood or grid search and collision detection between bodies and can encompass the fracture of large solids into smaller particles. The calibration of DEM has been a topic of discussion among research groups, with a focus on particle-to-particle interactions and bulk property behaviors. A proper calibration can help guide analysts and engineers in selecting appropriate procedures and identifying critical parameters for specific applications. I invite you to a presentation on a timeline of industry projects where DEM has been successfully used for a variety of simulations in different industries. Let’s discuss its humble beginnings and the extensive range of projects where DEM has been utilized to gain deeper insights.