Carnegie Mellon University

Dennis Trumble, PhD

Professor Trumble is an engineer, educator, and science writer who has lived and worked in the city of Pittsburgh since 1988. Though now a confirmed city-dweller, he grew up in a small town in upstate New York where farm animals outnumbered village residents by a wide margin and snowmobiles were a common mode of transportation in the winter months. Following high school he attended the University of Notre Dame where he worked the sidelines of the 1981 Sugar Bowl and earned two degrees in Electrical Engineering (BS/MS) before heading to the Artificial Heart Lab at Penn State to complete a second master’s degree, this one in Bioengineering.  After working twenty three years as a research scientist at Allegheny General Hospital, he completed his PhD at Carnegie Mellon University (2010) and joined the faculty as a Research Professor in Biomedical Engineering.

Dr. Trumble's professional career to date has focused on the design and development of implantable medical devices, mostly for cardiac assist purposes. Devices for which he holds patents include the TandemHeart centrifugal blood pump, a muscle energy converter, a vessel repair mechanism, a right heart assist device, a torsion-based cardiac assist device, and an artificial tendon. He also has considerable experience in hemodynamic monitoring, multi-scale computational modeling, skeletal muscle training, muscle-powered cardiac assist, axial-flow blood pumps, and sternal closure methods. His current research is focused on developing these innovative devices to realize their clinical impact. His other research interests include the neural basis for cognition, the nature of consciousness, animal awareness, and the psychology of belief and decision making.