Assessment of Flows Past Prosthetic Heart Valves
Dr. Olga Pierrakos (Department of Engineering, JMU, Principal Investigator)
Mr. Larry Scotten (ViVitro, Inc., Collaborator)
Ms. Annie Bailey (University of Virginia, Undergraduate Student)
Ms. Michelle Beatty (Department of Engineering, JMU, Undergraduate Student)
Over 100,000 heart valves are replaced worldwide each year with prosthetic heart valve implants (mechanical and biological). Although such implants are widely accepted, they are far from ideal with many complications and also inefficient flow characteristics. The assessment of heart valve performance (healthy, diseased, and prosthetic) has traditionally involved the examination of transvalvular characteristics, such as pressure gradients and effective and geometric orifice areas. However, recent research has shown that key downstream flow characteristics, such as vortex ring formation, should not be overlooked because quantifying this mechanism provides insight into the assessment of valve performance. Vortex ring formation, which is dependent on the valve design, is the roll-up of the shear layers shedding past valve leaflets. Governed by a universal time-scale or formation number that is based on the jet length to diameter ratio (L/D), vortex ring formation provides insight into the kinematics of optimizing effective fluid transport. This project is thus focused on heart valve assessment utilizing vortex dynamics and flow characterization.
- Have a wonderful summer!
- 2013 Summer Session