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Experimental Study of a 3D-Printed 3-Phase Miniaturized Fluidized Bed for Bioprocessing Screening

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Yuen Ling Ng, Dr Kheng-Lim GohORCiD, Dr Vladimir Zivkovic


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Fluidized bed as one type of reactors has been commonly used in chemical and process industry due to its excellent multi-phases contact, minimum diffusional resistance, and good heat and mass transfer [1]. Miniaturized fluidized beds (MFBs) are attracting a lot of attention as a cost-effective and process intensification (PI) tool for fast screening of solid processes and bioprocesses in recent years, out-performing many conventional large-scale fluidic systems [2, 3]. In this research, the miniaturized fluidized beds were innovatively fabricated using 3D printing technique. This novel micro fluidized bed reactor highlights the application of rapid design and optimization utilizing 3D printing technique. The performance of the flow of multiple microbubbles under different parameters (i.e. air sparger inner diameter, air-inlet numbers, and liquid& gas velocity) was studied. The effects of air sparger distance on multiple bubble flow were also investigated. Furthermore, the 3D-printing approach was used to manufacture cell-mimicking particles, based on density characteristics, to study the dynamics of cell in micro-fluidized bed reactor, providing a possibility for fast screening of cells during cell cultivation and bioprocessing processes. Specifically, the 3D-printed polymer particles (1.12g/cm3 in density) with diameters of 1 mm, 2 mm and 3 mm were respectively introduced into the fluidized column to form a liquid-solid-gas fluidized system, to mimic the fungal cell cultivation within the fluidized bed. The different flow regime including dispersed bubble flow, coalesced bubble flow and slug flow were mapped as function of operating conditions. References 1. Doroodchi, E., et al., Fluidisation and packed bed behaviour in capillary tubes. Powder Technology, 2012. 223: p. 131-136.2. Li, X., M. Liu, and Y. Li, Bed expansion and multi-bubble behavior of gas-liquid-solid micro-fluidized beds in sub-millimeter capillary. Chemical Engineering Journal, 2017. 328: p. 1122-1138.3. Wang, H., et al., A review of process intensification applied to solids handling. Chemical Engineering and Processing: Process Intensification, 2017. 118: p. 78-107.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Zhang Y, Ling Ng Y, Goh KL, Wang S, Zivkovic V

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: Fluidization XVI

Year of Conference: 2019

Online publication date: 26/05/2019

Acceptance date: 17/12/2018

Publisher: AIChE