The impedance (pressure drop/flow rate) of four curved artery models has been determined experimentally for steady and periodic flows simulating conditions in the aortic arch. Steady flow results indicate that very short entry lengths are required for flow development in curved artery models, and impedance is elevated above straight tube values by a factor of 3–4 for mean flow conditions in the aortic arch. Results for periodic flow with a nonzero mean show a significant elevation of mean flow impedance relative to values for steady flow at the mean flow rate—a factor of 2–3 for aortic arch flow conditions. The impedance of the first harmonic of periodic flows follows straight tube theory at high values of the unsteadiness parameter in agreement with available theory for curved tubes. The implications of the impedance measurements for wall shear stress in the aortic arch are discussed.

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