EPJ Web Conf.
Volume 140, 2017Powders and Grains 2017 – 8th International Conference on Micromechanics on Granular Media
|Number of page(s)||4|
|Section||Environmental granular processes|
|Published online||30 June 2017|
Modeling root growth in granular soils: effects of root stiffness and packing fraction
1 CIRAD, UMR AMAP, TA A51/PS2, 34398 Montpellier, France
2 LMGC, CNRS - University of Montpellier, 163 rue Auguste Broussonnet, 34090 Montpellier, France
3 IATE, UMR1208 INRA - CIRAD - University of Montpellier - SupAgro, 34060 Montpellier, France
4 〈MSE〉 2, UMI CNRS-MIT, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge 02139, USA
Published online: 30 June 2017
We use molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the effects of root bending stiffness and packing fraction on the path followed by a growing root in 2D packings of grains representing a soil. The root is modeled as a chain of elements that can grow in length and change their direction depending on the forces exerted by soil grains. We show that the root shape is mainly controlled by the bending stiffness of its apex. At low stiffness, the root randomly explores the pore space whereas at sufficiently high stiffness, of the order of soil hardness multiplied by mean grain size, the root follows a straight path across the soil. Between these two limits, the root shape can be characterized by the standard deviation of its re-directions at the scale of soil grains. We find that this shape parameter varies as a power-law function of the normalized bending stiffness.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.
Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.
Initial download of the metrics may take a while.