Numerical analysis of the effects of gravitational acceleration on aerosol deposition in the human trachea-bronchial airways: A 3D Computational Simulation

Document Type : Mechanics article


1 MSc student

2 Associate Professor/University of Tehran


The deposition of pharmaceutical aerosols and pathogenic particles are considered when predicting certain pulmonary disorders or determining the dose of respiratory drugs in order to control and manage the diseases. The breathing and flow pattern, particle size and density, airways geometry and the gravitational force exerted on the particles are among the factors contributing to the deposition in the respiratory tract. In this study, modification of the flow pattern in the respiratory tract was investigated by applying different boundary conditions on the outlet and the effects of various flow patterns on the deposition of the iron particles was studied. Keeping some of these patterns, the impact of exerting gravitational forces with different directions and values (from the microgravity to normal condition on the earth) on the particles was examined. The inflow with velocities of 2 and 4m/s was used in order to change the nature of the flow from laminar to turbulent. Two particle sizes of 4 and 8 microns for iron particles were assumed. As a result, deposition of particles increased with an increase in the gravitational force and the effect of changing the direction of the gravity from the X direction (aligned with the flow direction) to the Y direction (perpendicular to the flow) was shown to be a significant factor in a further increase of particle deposition. The modified flow pattern which was free of any reverse and secondary flow, has reduced the deposition values and resulted in an opposite effect increasing the size of iron particles.


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