A full-size acrylic model of a rotary blood pump was developed in order to utilize Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) to make measurements of the fluid velocities and turbulent stresses throughout the device. The development of an understanding of the hemodynamics within the blood pump is critical to the development and validation of computational models. A blood analog solution, consisting of sodium iodide solution and glycerin, was developed to match physiological kinematic viscosity. The refractive indecies of the fluid, the pump casing and the impeller were matched to facilitate the use of PIV to make velocity measurements. Velocity measurements made in the volute exit/diffuser region are presented for pumps speeds of 3000–3850 rpm. At each speed data were obtained at a physiological pressure of 90 mmHg and at a maximum flow condition. Four hundred data pairs were used for each resultant mean velocity vector value, representing greater than an order of magnitude more data pairs than reported previously in the literature on similar devices and resulting in velocity uncertainty levels of approximately ±2.9%.

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