An experimental study of newtonian and non-newtonian flow dynamics in a ventricular assist device

K. A. Mann, S. Deutsch, J. M. Tarbell, D. B. Geselowitz, G. Rosenberg, W. S. Pierce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


The fluid dynamic behavior of a Newtonian water/glycerol solution, a non- Newtonian polymer (separan) solution, and bovine blood were compared in the Penn State Electrical Ventricular Assist Device (EVAD). Pulsed doppler ultrasound velocimetry was used to measure velocities in the near wall region (0.95-2.7 mm) along the perimeter of the pump. Mean velocity, turbulence intensity, local and convective acceleration, and shear rate were calculated from the PDU velocity measurements. Flow visualization provided qualitative information about the general flow patterns in the EVAD. Results indicate that water/glycerol does not accurately model the flow characteristics of bovine blood in the EVAD. The non- Newtonian separan solution produced results closer to those of the bovine blood than did the water/glycerol solution. Near wall velocity magnitudes for the separan were similar to those of the bovine blood, but the profile shapes differed for portions of the pump cycle. All three fluids exhibited periods of stagnation. Bovine blood results indicated the presence of a desired rotational washout pattern at midsystole, while results with the other fluids did not show this feature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-147
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biomechanical Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Physiology (medical)


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