Scientists at the Texas Heart Institute are working to develop a bionic heart that they say may be the first feasible commercial replacement for the human heart.
The device, which is being built by BiVACOR, operates using only a single moving part that levitates between magnets inside the device, the Houston Chronicle reported. Past devices were limited in usefulness due to the constant grinding of parts.
In the new model, a spinning disk inside the device works to constantly propel blood, rather than pumping it like a real human heart. To mimic a real organ, the device will work to spin two to three thousand times per minute, while the disk inside adjusts 20,000 times per second to keep spinning flat, ABC News reported.
The prototype is currently being tested in large animals, and scientists are confident in the results.
“People bring in suitcases all the time with these devices, and by and large it’s a lot of crap,” Billy Cohn, a surgeon at the Heart Institute who worked with the device’s original creator, Daniel Timms, a mechanical engineer from Australia.
“When Daniel came in I realized almost immediately this was the most highly evolved and brilliant device I’ve ever seen. I immediately told him he should move to Houston,” Cohn told the Chronicle.