The concept of dispersive pressure was originally proposed by Bagnold (1954), who showed experimentally that sheared granular material develops a dispersive pressure that is proportional to the shear stress and the particle concentration. Legros (2002) presented a theoretical analysis suggesting that dispersive pressure cannot account for the inverse grading commonly observed in grain flows, modified grain flows or traction carpets, contrary to what has been accepted for decades by many sedimentologists. He pointed out that, if the dispersive pressure in a sheared granular mass increases and exceeds the applied normal stress or static pressure, the net upward force acting...

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