Flows of granular particles in sliding contacts have been proposed as a “dry” lubrication mechanism. Granular flows are complex flows that exhibit fluid and solid behavior. A transparent granular shear cell (GSC) with an annular geometry was constructed to study their behavior. The GSC operates at variable speeds and its wheel roughness was fabricated to physically match the well-known theoretical boundary conditions of Jenkins and Richman. Effects of the physical variables on the local granular flow parameters are presented. A continuum modeling approach, known as granular kinetic lubrication (GKL), was employed to predict the experimental data. Good qualitative and modest quantitative agreements between the experiments and model were obtained.

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