Broad distribution of stick-slip events in Slowly Sheared Granular Media: Table-top production of a Gutenberg-Richter-like distributionMichael Bretz1, Russell Zaretzki1, 2, Stuart B. Field1, 3, Namiko Mitarai4 and Franco Nori1, 4
1 Department of Physics, University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
2 Department of Statistics, University of Tennessee - Knoxville, TN 37996, USA
3 Department of Physics, Colorado State University - Fort Collins, CO 80523, USA
4 Frontier Research System, The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN) Saitama 351-0198, Japan
received 15 February 2006; accepted 13 April 2006
published online 24 May 2006
We monitor the stick-slip displacements of a very slowly driven moveable perforated top plate which interacts via shearing with a packing of identical glass beads confined in a tray. When driven at a constant stress rate, the distributions of large event displacements and energies triggered by the stick-slip instabilities exhibit power law responses reminiscent of the Gutenberg-Richter law for earthquakes. Small events are quasi-size independent, signaling crossover from single-bead transport to collective behavior.
91.30.Px - Earthquakes.
89.75.Da - Systems obeying scaling laws.
05.65.+b - Self-organized systems.
© EDP Sciences 2006