A positive displacement pump with six rotary pistons was proposed as an artificial heart. The pump's design was characterized by high symmetry and compactness. Thus, a spherical volume of 4 inch diameter sufficed for a pump delivering 10 L/min at 120 pulses/min with the pistons turning at 30 rpm. The pistons and four connecting gears were the only moving parts. The pump functions in two separate halves as left and right ventricles, with two of the six pistons each having inlet and outlet passages, and one of them replacing mitral and pulmonary valves with the other, tricuspid and aortic valves. The function of the intraventricular septum was provided by the other four pistons whose interiors also accommodated driving motors each capable of 0.4 Nm torque for a combined power of 5 watts. There were no stagnant regions in the pumping volume, and at all internal surfaces in contact with blood, there was periodic shear stress not exceeding ∼ 300 Pa.
©1991 American Society of Artificial Internal Organs