Modeling the bifurcating flow in a CT-scanned human lung airway

H. Y. Luo, Yang Liu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

94 Citations (Scopus)


The inspiratory flow characteristics in a CT-scanned human lung model were numerically investigated using low Reynolds number (LRN) κ-ω turbulent model. The five-generation airway is extracted from the trachea to segmental bronchi of a 60-year-old Chinese male patient. Computations were carried out in the Reynolds number range of 900-2100, corresponding to mouth-air breathing rates of 190-440 ml/s. Flow patterns on the Re=2100 and flow rate distribution were presented. In this model, the flow pattern is very complex. To count the effect of laryngeal jet on trachea inlet, the trachea was extended and modified to simulate the larynx, consequently the inlet velocity profile is biased towards the rear wall. In the inferior lobar bronchi, there are two stems in which the axial velocity is stronger but secondary velocity is weaker. Secondary flow in the lateral bronchi is stronger than the medial ones. With increasing Re, the air flow increases in the middle, inferior lobes and left main bronchus, i.e., flow biases to left and downward.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2681-2688
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2008


  • CT scan
  • Human lung
  • Inspiratory flow
  • Numerical simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation

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