A coupled SPH-DEM approach to model the interactions between multiple red blood cells in motion in capillaries

Polwaththe-Gallage, Hasitha-Nayanajith, Saha, Suvash C., Sauret, Emilie, Flower, Robert, & Gu, Yuantong (2016) A coupled SPH-DEM approach to model the interactions between multiple red blood cells in motion in capillaries. International Journal of Mechanics and Materials in Design, 12(4), pp. 477-494.

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Red blood cells (RBCs) are the most common type of blood cells in the blood and 99% of the blood cells are RBCs. During the circulation of blood in the cardiovascular network, RBCs squeeze through the tiny blood vessels (capillaries). They exhibit various types of motions and deformed shapes, when flowing through these capillaries with diameters varying between 5 10 µm. RBCs occupy about 45 % of the whole blood volume and the interaction between the RBCs directly influences on the motion and the deformation of the RBCs. However, most of the previous numerical studies have explored the motion and deformation of a single RBC when the interaction between RBCs has been neglected. In this study, motion and deformation of two 2D (two-dimensional) RBCs in capillaries are comprehensively explored using a coupled smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) and discrete element method (DEM) model. In order to clearly model the interactions between RBCs, only two RBCs are considered in this study even though blood with RBCs is continuously flowing through the blood vessels. A spring network based on the DEM is employed to model the viscoelastic membrane of the RBC while the inside and outside fluid of RBC is modelled by SPH. The effect of the initial distance between two RBCs, membrane bending stiffness (Kb) of one RBC and undeformed diameter of one RBC on the motion and deformation of both RBCs in a uniform capillary is studied. Finally, the deformation behavior of two RBCs in a stenosed capillary is also examined. Simulation results reveal that the interaction between RBCs has significant influence on their motion and deformation.

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ID Code: 91634
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Red blood cells, Smoothed particle hydrodynamics, computational biomechanics, blood flow, meshfree methods
DOI: 10.1007/s10999-015-9328-8
ISSN: 1573-8841
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING (090300)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING (090300) > Biomechanical Engineering (090302)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > INTERDISCIPLINARY ENGINEERING (091500) > Computational Fluid Dynamics (091501)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Chemistry, Physics & Mechanical Engineering
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
Copyright Statement: The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10999-015-9328-8
Deposited On: 05 Jan 2016 23:09
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2017 18:01

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