322.071 Transport Phenomena in Biological Systems
This course is in all assigned curricula part of the STEOP.
This course is in at least 1 assigned curriculum part of the STEOP.

2021W, VO, 2.0h, 3.0EC


  • Semester hours: 2.0
  • Credits: 3.0
  • Type: VO Lecture
  • Format: Distance Learning

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of the course, students are able to:

  • Understand the dynamics of physical, chemical and biological processes that control heat, mass and momentum transport in biological applications, integrating specific knowledge with that of other related fields in engineering (for example thermodynamics and fluid mechanics);
  • follow specific physico-mathematical reasoning that are required to understand and model transport phenomena in biological systems;
  • understand and solve simple problems encountered in biological/chemical applications;
  • develop learning skills necessary to undertake further study with a high degree of autonomy;

Subject of course

  1. Introduction: The role of transport processes in biological systems; Conservation equations; dimensional analysis and scales of motions; Transport by diffusion; Transport by convection;

  2. Fluid Flow in the Circulation and Tissues: Oscillating flow in a cylindrical tube; Flow in Curved Vessels; Flow in Branching Vessels; Flow in arteries (Carotid Artery, Aorta, Coronary Arteries); Wall elasticity; Arterial Fluid Dynamics and Atherosclerosis; Heart-Valve Hemodynamics;

  3. Mass Transport in Biological systems - Diffusion: Fick's law; Diffusion through a film; Diffusion through porous media and through porous membranes; Diffusion with reactions;

  4. Mass Transport in Biological systems - Convection: Convective transport; Transport from an oxygen bubble; Convective transport with reaction;

Teaching methods

Calculation of examples and case studies at the blackboard will be used to support students in achieving the expected learning outcomes.

Mode of examination


Additional information

Note: The first VO lecture will be Wednesday October 6, 2021.

3 VO exam dates each semester. Each VO exam covers the entire program of the VO lectures.

Structure of the exam:
-) Each exam consists of 2/3 problems
-) Each problem is divided into parts (2 or 3, typically).
A score is associated to each part (the maximum cumulative score considered to calculate the final grade is 100).
You should solve each problem by applying the correct equations and by providing the required results.


Your grade will be assigned as follows:
SCORE                GRADE
<50   -> (fail)          5
51-65 -> (pass)      4
66-73 -> (pass)      3
74-85 -> (pass)      2
>86 -> (pass)         1

NOTE: Depending on the overall behavior of the class, the score ranges given above might change and shift towards lower values.
For instance, if scores are all below 85  then  ranges could be as follows:
SCORE                GRADE
<45   -> (fail)          5
46-60 -> (pass)      4
61-68 -> (pass)      3
69-80 -> (pass)      2
>81 -> (pass)         1



Course dates

Wed10:00 - 12:0006.10.2021 - 19.01.2022 (LIVE)Transport phenomena-Lecture
Transport Phenomena in Biological Systems - Single appointments
Wed06.10.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed13.10.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed20.10.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed27.10.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed03.11.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed10.11.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed17.11.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed24.11.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed01.12.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed15.12.202110:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed12.01.202210:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture
Wed19.01.202210:00 - 12:00 Transport phenomena-Lecture

Examination modalities

Students have to write a final written exam to assess whether they have achieved the expected knowledge and preparation.


DayTimeDateRoomMode of examinationApplication timeApplication modeExam
Wed14:00 - 16:0019.10.2022Seminarraum BA 08A - MB written04.10.2022 08:00 - 14.10.2022 18:00TISSExam-VO
Thu12:00 - 14:0017.11.2022Seminarraum BA 08A - MB written25.10.2022 17:00 - 11.11.2022 18:00TISSExam-VO
Fri10:00 - 12:0003.02.2023 VO - Examwritten06.01.2023 08:00 - 27.01.2023 18:00TISSExam-VO
Thu11:00 - 13:0002.03.2023 VO - Examwritten06.02.2023 09:00 - 24.02.2023 09:00TISSExam-VO
Wed12:00 - 13:0031.05.2023 onlinewritten24.04.2023 09:00 - 22.05.2023 09:00TISSExam-VO

Course registration

Begin End Deregistration end
17.09.2021 12:00 04.10.2021 09:00 04.10.2021 09:00

Registration modalities

Please register to the course in case you want to attend the lectures


Study CodeSemesterPrecon.Info
066 453 Biomedical Engineering


No lecture notes are available.

Previous knowledge

Suggested readings:

  • R. B. Bird, W. E. Stewart, E. N. Lightfoot, Transport Phenomena, Ed. John Wiley and Sons, 1960
  • G. A. Truskey, F. Yuan, D. F. Katz, Transport phenomena in biological systems, Ed. Prentice-Hall, 2010