Numerical simulation of an axial blood pump

L.P. Chua, B. Su, T.M. Lim, Tongming Zhou

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    39 Citations (Scopus)


    The axial blood pump with a magnetically suspended impeller is superior to other artificial blood pumps because of its small size. In this article, the distributions of velocity, path line, pressure, and shear stress in the straightener, the rotor, and the diffuser of the axial blood pump, as well as the gap zone were obtained using the commercial software, Fluent (version 6.2). The main focus was on the flow field of the blood pump. The numerical results showed that the axial blood pump could produce 5.14 L/min of blood at 100 mm Hg through the outlet when rotating at 11 000 rpm. However, there was a leakage flow of 1.06 L/min in the gap between the rotor cylinder and the pump housing, and thus the overall flow rate the impeller could generate was 6.2 L/min. The numerical results showed that 75% of the scalar shear stresses (SSs) were less than 250 Pa, and 10% were higher than 500 Pa within the whole pump. The high SS region appeared around the blade tip where a large variation of velocity direction and magnitude was found, which might be due to the steep angle variation at the blade tip. Because the exposure time of the blood cell at the high SS region within the pump was relatively short, it might not cause serious damage to the blood cells, but the improvement of blade profile should be considered in the future design of the axial pump.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)560-570
    JournalArtificial Organs
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


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