Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Biological and Irrigation Engineering

Committee Chair(s)

Timothy Taylor


Timothy Taylor


Ronald Sims


Heng Ban


Robert Spall


This study was performed to increase knowledge of oxygen mass transfer (kLa) and mixing times in the scale-up of disposable bioreactors.Results of oxygen mass transfer studies showed kLa to increase with increasing agitation and aeration rates. By maintaining a scale-up constant such as gassed power to volume or shear, an almost constant kLa was achieved during scale-up from 50 to 2000 L. Using the scale-up constant Pg/V resulted in statistically higher kLa values at greater reactor volumes. Mixing times were revealed to be significantly affected by agitation, but not by the aeration rates tested. No pattern was recognized in the mixing time data over an increase in volume.

Commonly used methods for predicting kLa upon scale-up were compared to experimental data. New coefficients were determined to fit the historic models to the parameters of this study, namely the unique geometry and low agitation and aeration rates used in the single-use systems. Each of the resulting four models was found to have average error rates from 16-23%. Although the error rates are not statistically different, the Moresi and Patete model was determined to be most conceptually accurate. The Moresi and Patete model found kLa to be more dependent on aeration than on the power input. This finding was consistent with the results of the experimental studies.

The results of this study were for aeration rates (0.02-0.04 vvm) and agitation rates (Pg/V range of 2-20 W/m3) that are commonly used in single-use bioreactor systems.




This work made publicly available electronically on April 11, 2011.

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