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CFD studies on hydrodynamic characteristics of shaking bioreactors with wide conical bottom

Lu, Zhiming, Wang, Kang, Jin, Gaofeng, Huang, Kang, Huang, Jingfeng
Journal of chemical technology and biotechnology 2018 v.93 no.3 pp. 810-817
bioreactors, cell culture, deformation, hydrodynamics, liquids, mammals, mass transfer, microsatellite repeats, simulation models, turbulent flow
BACKGROUND: Disposable bioreactors based on orbital shaking technology have been employed extensively for mammalian cell culture, which proved to be less expensive and more flexible compared with mechanical stirred‐tank bioreactors. However, it is difficult to evaluate flow parameters quantitatively since the flow field in bioreactors is complicated. RESULTS: The flow characteristics of shaking bioreactors with a wide conical bottom under different shaking frequencies and filling volumes were simulated by CFD method. The validity of the simulation model was investigated by comparing simulated free‐surface shapes and liquid levels with experimental results, and the CFD simulation results were shown to be in good agreement with experiment data. CONCLUSION: The results show that: turbulence parameters (k and ϵ) increase with shaking frequency, while they decrease with filling volume proportionally; shaking frequency has no significant effect on specific gas–liquid interface area (a) but a positive effect on mass transfer coefficient (kL); the volumetric mass transfer coefficient (kLa) decreases with filling volume because of the combined effect of a and kL; the average shear strain rate (SSR) increases significantly with frequency, while it decreases with filling volume. Results also show that the SSR of shaking bioreactors is mainly distributed in low range which is acceptable for cell cultivation. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry