Experiments on continuous, steady flows of granular materials down an inclined channel or chute have been conducted with the objectives of understanding the characteristics of chute flows and of acquiring information on the rheological behavior of granular material flow. Two neighboring fiber-optic displacement probes provide a means to measure (1) the mean velocity by cross-correlating two signals from the probes, (2) the unsteady or random component of the particle velocity in the longitudinal direction by a procedure of identifying particles, and (3) the mean particle spacing at the boundaries by counting the frequency of passage of the particles. In addition, a strain-gauged plate built into the chute base has been employed to make direct measurement of shear stress at the base. With the help of these instruments, the vertical profiles of mean velocity, velocity fluctuation, and linear concentration were obtained at the sidewalls. Measurements of some basic flow properties such as solid fraction, velocity, shear rate, and velocity fluctuation were analyzed to understand the characteristics of the chute flow. Finally, the rheological behavior of granular materials was studied with the experimental data. In particular, the rheological models of Lun et al. (1984) for general flow and fully developed flow were compared with the present data.

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