Students are to select one of the following topics related to fermenter design and complete a report on that topic. For each topic, the report should describe the problem encountered (e.g., the need to measure dissolved oxygen concentration), and then provide a critical analysis on how certain design criteria have been applied which result in particular solution(s). As in Paper #1, your report must have detailed references which should include commercial references such as patents and technical specification sheets. Other topics not on this list will also be considered but must first be approved by the course instructor.
For advice on the preparation of a written report see Preparation of written reports.
Airlift Bioreactors Airlift bioreactors are a fermenter configuration that does not use a stirring motor. Describe airlift bioreactors, including how they work, and modifications in this design. You should address what would cause a manufacturing company to select this type of fermenter over others.
Impellers Impellers are used in all stirred tank reactors. Unique impeller designs are necessary for bioreactors. In your report you should describe the various types of impellers available, their relative characteristics, merits and costs on a laboratory and industrial scale.
Foam Microbial growth in a well-oxygenated and well-mixed vessel can generate a substantial amount of foam. Your report should detail the current technologies (both chemical and mechanical) available for the monitoring and control of foam on a laboratory and industrial scale.
Oxygen Probes Probes are used to measure dissolved oxygen concentration. Your report should describe the common types of oxygen probes that are available, how they work, their relative characteristics, costs and use on a laboratory and industrial scale.
Vessels The materials used for the construction of bioreactors must be selected so that the bioreactor does not corrode and so that the cells are not deleteriously affected by the material. Your report should describe the various types of materials used for bioreactors, how the materials are selected and their relative characteristics and costs.
Disposable Bioreactors Single-use polymeric bioreactors of up to 1000 liters have gained increasing popularity in certain applications. Your report should describe the varieties of disposable bioreactors currently available, their technical specifications and function in the process environment, and how their costs can be competitive with permanent bioreactors under certain circumstances.
Animal Cell Bioreactors Animal cells are morphologically different than bacteria, yeasts or mold, and require a unique bioreactor design. Your report should highlight how the demands of these cells influence the bioreactor design.
Solid State Bioreactors Numerous products are fermented, but do not use a submerged culture (e.g., yogurt and soy sauce). Your report should describe the design of bioreactors used for fermentation of solid or semi-solid products.