A report discusses some modifications of the ventricular assist device (VAD), which was described in "Small Implantable Pump Would Assist Circulation of Blood" (MSC-22424), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 20, No. 7 (July 1996), page 86. The VAD is a surgically implantable, miniature rotary pump designed to assist in pulmonary or systemic circulation of blood. The modifications, guided by computational simulations of blood flow in the pump, were directed partly toward reducing stagnant flow, backflow, and unsteady flow in order to reduce shear stresses and thereby reduce damage to blood cells and thereby, further, reduce clotting.
This work was done by Bernard J. Rosenbaum of Johnson Space Center, Dochan Kwak of Ames Research Center, Robert J. Benkowski of the Baylor College of Medicine, and Kris Cetin of MCAT Institute.
This invention is owned by NASA, and a patent application has been filed. Inquiries concerning nonexclusive or exclusive license for its commercial development should be addressed to
the Patent Counsel
Johnson Space Center
Refer to MSC-22822