Numerical Analyses for Low Reynolds Flow in a Ventricular Assist Device

Research paper by Guilherme Lopes Jr, Eduardo Bock, Luben Gómez

Indexed on: 09 Nov '16Published on: 01 Oct '16Published in: Artificial Organs


Scientific and technological advances in blood pump developments have been driven by their importance in cardiac patient treatments and in the expansion of life quality in assisted people. To improve and optimize the design and development, numerical tools were incorporated into the analyses of these mechanisms and have become indispensable in their advances. This study analyzes the flow behavior with low impeller Reynolds number, for which there is no consensus on the full development of turbulence in ventricular assist devices (VAD). For supporting analyses, computational numerical simulations were carried out in different scenarios with the same rotation speed. Two modeling approaches were applied: laminar flow and turbulent flow with the standard, RNG and realizable κ − ε; the standard and SST κ − ω models; and Spalart–Allmaras models. The results agree with the literature for VAD and the range for transient flows in stirred tanks with an impeller Reynolds number around 2800 for the tested scenarios. The turbulent models were compared, and it is suggested, based on the expected physical behavior, the use of κ−ε RNG, standard and SST κ−ω, and Spalart–Allmaras models to numerical analyses for low impeller Reynolds numbers according to the tested flow scenarios.