Aerosol deposition in the upper airways of a child

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In a small child, normally only a small amount of inhaled aerosol particles reaches the lungs because the majority deposits in the upper airways. In this study, the upper airways of a 9- month-old child, based on computed tomography (CT) data, are modeled to serve as input for a computational fluid dynamics package (CFX). Verification of the validity of aerosol deposition calculations by this package is accomplished by evaluating two test cases, which also can be solved analytically. The numerically found sedimentation fraction in a horizontally placed straight pipe shows deviations from the exact solution for small particle sizes (less than 3 micron) due to small velocities generated by the use of an unstructured mesh. Although these velocities are small compared to the mainstream velocity, they are comparable with the terminal settling velocity of such a particle. Also the test case for inertial impaction in a bend pipe demonstrated the same problem. With this in mind, the aerosol deposition of 3.7-micron particles in the upper airway model of the child (SAINT-model) was calculated. Results were compared with experimentally found results in the literature. For small tidal volumes and flow rates, the computational results matched the experimentally measured results. However, large deviations were found for higher flow rates and small particle sizes. Most probably the incompletely modeled entrance at the nose and inertial effects due to turbulence might be responsible.
Original languageUndefined
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2005
Event15th Congress of the International Society of Aerosols in Medicine (ISAM) 2005 - Perth, Australia
Duration: 14 Mar 200518 Mar 2005


Conference15th Congress of the International Society of Aerosols in Medicine (ISAM) 2005


  • IR-67178
  • METIS-229032

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