The pulsatile flow and gas transport of a Newtonian passive fluid across an array of cylindrical microfibers are numerically investigated. It is related to an implantable, artificial lung where the blood flow is driven by the right heart. The fibers are modeled as either squared or staggered arrays. The pulsatile flow inputs considered in this study are a steady flow with a sinusoidal perturbation and a cardiac flow. The aims of this study are twofold: identifying favorable array geometry/spacing and system conditions that enhance gas transport; and providing pressure drop data that indicate the degree of flow resistance or the demand on the right heart in driving the flow through the fiber bundle. The results show that pulsatile flow improves the gas transfer to the fluid compared to steady flow. The degree of enhancement is found to be significant when the oscillation frequency is large, when the void fraction of the fiber bundle is decreased, and when the Reynolds number is increased; the use of a cardiac flow input can also improve gas transfer. In terms of array geometry, the staggered array gives both a better gas transfer per fiber (for relatively large void fraction) and a smaller pressure drop (for all cases). For most cases shown, an increase in gas transfer is accompanied by a higher pressure drop required to power the flow through the device.
Pulsatile Flow and Mass Transport Over an Array of Cylinders: Gas Transfer in a Cardiac-Driven Artificial Lung
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Chan, K. Y., Fujioka, H., Bartlett, R. H., Hirschl, R. B., and Grotberg, J. B. (September 14, 2005). "Pulsatile Flow and Mass Transport Over an Array of Cylinders: Gas Transfer in a Cardiac-Driven Artificial Lung." ASME. J Biomech Eng. February 2006; 128(1): 85–96. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.2133761
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