HOUSTON (Nov. 30, 2009) Scientists and engineers from two of the nation's largest industries medicine and energy will come together Dec. 7 with leading academicians to explore the synergies in moving oil and pumping blood.
Much like moving oil through a pipeline, the heart must pump blood through the body. Both systems need clean, well-functioning pipes (or blood vessels), free of blockages or corrosion, to function efficiently. Both industries also are crucial to our nation's economy and future. Sponsored by ExxonMobil, the Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center and University of Houston, the Pumps & Pipes III conference will share new technologies, stimulate discussion, and spark ideas among experts in the petroleum, medical and imaging industries that face similar challenges, even if on a very different scale.
"Today engineers are talking to medical researchers about using nanoparticles to sort stem cells," said Alan Lumsden, M.D., co-director of Pumps & Pipes, medical director of the Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center and chair of the department of cardiovascular surgery at The Methodist Hospital. "An engineer who specializes in cleaning oil spills thought of it during a discussion at the last Pumps & Pipes conference. It's amazing the ideas that flow when energy and medicine experts get together. The interaction sparks ideas that would never have materialized if we stayed in the medical center and they stayed in the oil field."
Pumps & Pipes III: Better Together will have speakers in the morning sessions from medicine, energy, and academia discussing use of advanced nanotechnology, robotics and distant monitoring in common issues like pipeline corrosion and blood vessel integrity. The afternoon sessions will feature new discussions on pipes and fluids, a concept that spawned joint oil and medicine ideas in the past when Methodist researchers looking at preventing aneurysms gained a new perspective of blood flow dynamics from
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University of Houston