Flow in a Simple Model Skeletal Muscle Ventricle: Comparison Between Numerical and Physical Simulations

[+] Author and Article Information
F. S. Henry, F. Iudicello, M. W. Collins

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Aeronautics, City University, United Kingdom

A. P. Shortland, R. A. Black

Department of Clinical Engineering, University of Liverpool, United Kingdom

J. C. Jarvis, S. Salmons

Department of Human Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Liverpool, United Kingdom

J Biomech Eng 119(1), 13-19 (Feb 01, 1997) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2796058 History: Received June 08, 1995; Revised February 01, 1996; Online October 30, 2007


Flow patterns generated during ventricular filling have been investigated for three different combinations of flow rate and injection volume. The numerical solutions from a commercially available computational fluid dynamics package were compared with observations made under identical flow conditions in a physical model for the purpose of code validation. Particle pathlines were generated from the numerical velocity data and compared with corresponding flow-visualization pictures. A vortex formed at the inlet to the ventricle in both cases: During the filling phase, the vortex expanded and traveled toward the apex of the ventricle until, at the end of filling, the vortex occupied the full radial extent of the ventricle; the vortex continued to travel once the filling process had ended. The vortices in vitro were more circular in shape and occupied a smaller volume than those generated by the numerical model. Nevertheless, comparison of the trajectories of the vortex centres showed that there was good agreement for the three conditions studied. Postprocessing of velocity data from the numerical solution yielded wall shear-stress measurements and particle pathlines that clearly illustrate the mass-transport qualities of the traveling vortex structure. For the cases considered here, the vortex transit produced a time-dependent shear stress distribution that had a peak value of 20 dynes cm−2 , with substantially lower levels of shear stress in those regions not reached by the traveling vortex. We suggest that vortex formation and travel could reduce the residence time of fluid within a skeletal muscle ventricle, provided that the vortex travels the complete length of the ventricle before fluid is ejected at the start of the next cycle.

Copyright © 1997 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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