Analysis of optimal design configurations for a multiple disk centrifugal blood pump. Academic Article uri icon


  • A multiple disk centrifugal pump was analyzed as a blood pump for use in cardiac assistance or as a bridge to transplant device. The original configuration consisted of 6 parallel disks with 0.016 inch spacing between disks. This pump suffered from a degradation of flow with increasing afterload. A study was conducted to analyze flow performance as a function of afterload, preload, and motor speed. Configurations were examined including 4, 5, and 6 disks each with spacings of 0.15, 0.20, and 0.25 inches. Flow rates were examined for variations in afterload from 60-130 mm Hg, in preload from 0-20 mm Hg and for motor speeds of 1,250, 1,500, and 1,750 rpm. Analyses of afterload effects were intended to determine those configurations that produced less flow degradation with increasing afterload. Analyses of motor speed effects were intended to determine any configurations that produced greater flow increases with increasing motor speed. A hemolysis study was also performed. Both plasma free hemoglobin and the index of hemolysis were compared to data reported for other centrifugal blood flow devices. Results indicated that a 5 disk configuration with a 0.15 inch spacing produced optimal flow results with minimal degradation at higher afterloads. No optimal configuration based upon motor speed was indicated. Preload effects on pump performance were minimal. Hemolysis results indicated minimal blood damage with levels below those of many other centrifugal blood pump designs.

altmetric score

  • 6

author list (cited authors)

  • Miller, G. E., & Fink, R

citation count

  • 12

complete list of authors

  • Miller, GE||Fink, R

publication date

  • January 1999