On the Dynamic Suction Pumping of Blood Cells in Tubular Hearts

Nicholas A. Battista, Andrea N. Lane, Laura A. Miller

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

12 Scopus citations


Around the third week after gestation in embryonic development, the human heart consists only of a valveless tube, unlike a fully developed adult heart, which is multi-chambered. At this stage in development, the heart valves have not formed and so net flow of blood through the heart must be driven by a different mechanism. It is hypothesized that there are two possible mechanisms that drive blood flow at this stage—Liebau pumping (dynamic suction pumping (DSP) or valveless pumping) and peristaltic pumping. We implement the immersed boundary method (IBM) with adaptive mesh refinement (IBAMR) to numerically study the effect of hematocrit on the circulation around a valveless tube. Both peristalsis and DSP are considered. In the case of DSP, the heart and circulatory system is simplified as a flexible tube attached to a relatively rigid racetrack. For some Womersley number (Wo) regimes, there is significant net flow around the racetrack. We find that the addition of flexible blood cells does not significantly affect flow rates within the tube forWo ≤ 10, except in the case forWo ≈ 1. 5 where we see a decrease in average flow with increasing volume fraction. On the other hand, peristalsis consistently drives blood around the racetrack for allWo and for all hematocrit considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAssociation for Women in Mathematics Series
Number of pages21
StatePublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameAssociation for Women in Mathematics Series
ISSN (Print)2364-5733
ISSN (Electronic)2364-5741

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • General Mathematics


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