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April 29, 2019: "Surrogate Models for Marine Mammal Lung Dynamics when Exposed to Underwater Explosion Impulse"

  • April 29, 2019
  • 4:00 p.m.
  • 100 Hancock Hall
  • Dr. Emily Guzas, NUWC-Newport
  • Faculty Host: Dr. Kevin Wang


Abstract: Primary blast injury (PBI), which relates gross blast-related trauma or traces of injury in air-filled tissues or those tissues adjacent to air-filled regions (rupture/lesions, contusions, hemorrhaging), has been documented in a number of marine mammal species after blast exposure. However, very little is known about marine mammal susceptibility to PBI, except in rare opportunistic cases. As a result, small terrestrial mammals have often been used as surrogates in experimental protocols to analyze potential effects of PBI to marine mammals, but there are fundamental physiological differences between organisms that live in terrestrial environments compared to those that live in an aquatic environment. Researchers at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport (NUWCDIVNPT), have undertaken a three year effort to integrate computational fluid-structure interaction techniques with marine mammal anatomical structures. A crucial part of this work involved code validation to test data for a suitable surrogate testing scenario. We employed a surrogate air-filled spherical membrane structure that was subjected to shock loading as our approximation to the full complexity of in vivo marine mammal lung response to underwater explosions (UNDEX). This approach incrementally improves upon the simplistic approximation to marine mammal lung response to UNDEX that is currently used by the US Navy, which employs a surrogate of a one-dimensional spherical air bubble of equivalent volume to the lungs of a given marine mammal species. In this seminar, we will discuss the various surrogate models for marine mammal lung dynamics when exposed to UNDEX, including both verification and validation testing.

Bio: Emily Guzas has been an analyst/engineer in the platform and payload integration division at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport (NUWCDIVNPT) since 2010. Her work employs numerical modeling tools to understand the physics at play in various environments or to analyze data sets for diverse applications. Her areas of interest include high performance computing, numerical modeling techniques, innovative data visualization, constitutive behavior of soft materials, structural dynamics, contact mechanics, and fluid-structure interaction modeling methods. Her current work involves studies of implosion dynamics in confined environments, physics-based modeling of induction infrared thermography (IIRT) for NDE of sensitization in corrosion-resistant steel and aluminum alloys, and computational modeling of marine mammal lung and melon dynamics to underwater explosive impulse. She holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Virginia, and Masters of Science and Doctorate of Philosophy degrees in Structural Engineering from Cornell University. Outside of NUWCDIVNPT she co-manages a household with two boisterous young kids, an engineer husband, and 7 full-sized bikes (5 are hers).