The Chandler loop is an artificial circulatory platform for in vitro hemodynamic experiments. In most experiments, the working fluid is subjected to a stress field via rotation of the Chandler loop, which, in turn, induces biochemical responses of the suspended cells. For very low rotation rates, the stress field can be approximated using laminar flow in a straight tube as a model. However, as the rotation rate increases, while still maintaining laminar flow, the effect of the tube curvature causes the stress field to deviate considerably from the straight tube approximation. In this manuscript, we investigate the flow and associated strain rate field of an incompressible Newtonian fluid in a Chandler loop as a function of the governing non-dimensional fluid dynamic parameters. We find that the Dean number, which is proportional to the rotation rate, is the dominant parameter in determining the fluid strain rate. We propose an empirical formula for predicting the average fluid strain rate magnitude in the working fluid that is valid over a wide parameter space to be used in lieu of the common, yet restrictive, straight tube-based prediction.

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