We have been developing a small, lightweight motor-driven pulsatile left ventricular assist device (LVAD) with a ball screw. The motor-driven LVAD consists of a brushless DC motor and a ball screw. The attractive magnetic force between Nd-Fe-B magnets (with a diameter of 5 mm and a thickness of 1.5 mm) mounted in holes in a silicone rubber sheet (thickness 2 mm) and an iron plate adhered onto the a diaphragm of the blood pump can provide optimum active blood filling during the pump filling phase. The LVAD has a stroke volume of 55 ml and an overall volume of 285 ml; it weighs 360 g. The controller mainly consists of a fuzzy logic position and velocity controller to apply doctors' and engineers' knowledge to control the LVAD. Each unit of the controller consists of a functionally independent program module for easy improvement of the controller's performance. The LVAD was evaluated in in vitro experiments using a mock circulation. A maximum pump outflow of 5.1 l/min was obtained at a drive rate of 95 bpm against an afterload of 95 mmHg, and active filling using the attractive magnetic force provided a pump output of 3.6 l/min at a drive rate of 75 bpm under a preload of 0 mmHg. The operating efficiency of the LVAD was measured at between 8% and 10.5%. While the LVAD can provide adequate pump outflow for cardiac assistance, further upgrading of the software and improvement of the blood pump are required to improve pump performance and efficiency.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Biomedical Engineering
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine