Computation of Blood Flow in a Diaphragm-type Ventricular Assist Device

M. Doyle, S. Tavoularis, and Y. Bourgault (Canada)


Cardiovascular Implants and Devices, FEM Modelling, Computational Blood Flow, FluidStructure Interaction


The goal of this research is to advance the use of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) in modelling the operation of ventricular assist devices (VADs) connected to the circulatory system, as a cost-effective alternative to experimentation. An idealized VAD, based on a design developed by a group at Brunel University, has been chosen for this research because of the availability of experimental and computational results. The simulations are made with the use of the commercial finite element software package ADINA, which is among the few available codes with fluid-structure interaction (FSI) capabilities, as required for the modelling of fluid flows coupled with the deformation of solid components. The present VAD model consists of two rigid hemispherical chambers separated by a flexible circular diaphragm. This device is attached to compliant and resistive elements used to represent the components of the circulatory system and is run on a closed loop. Preliminary results show the feasibility of this approach and are, in order-of-magnitude, in agreement with the Brunel University results.

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