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Statics and inertial dynamics of a ruck in a rug

Statics and inertial dynamics of a ruck in a rug

Physical Review Letters 103(17): 174301

We consider the familiar problem of a bump, or ruck, in a rug. Under lateral compression, a rug bends to form a ruck--a localized region in which it is no longer in contact with the floor. We show that when the external force that created the ruck is removed, the ruck flattens out unless the initial compression is greater than a critical value, which we determine. We also study the inertial motion of a ruck that is generated when one end of the rug is moved rapidly. We show that the equations of motion admit a traveling ruck solution for which a linear combination of the tension and kinetic energy is determined by the ruck size. We confirm these findings experimentally. We end by discussing the potential implications of our work for the analogous propagation of localized slip pulses in the sliding of two bodies in contact.

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Accession: 055911015

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PMID: 19905760

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.103.174301

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