Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Design and investigation of a 3D-printed micro-fluidized bed

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



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by MDPI, 2021.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.Micro-fluidized bed has aroused much attention due to its low-cost, intensified-process and fast-screening properties. In this paper, a micro-fluidized bed (15 × 15 mm in cross-section) was designed and fabricated with the use of the stereolithography printing technique, for the investigation of bubbles’ hydrodynamics and comparison of the solids (3D-printed particles VS fungal pellets) fluidization characteristics. In a liquid–gas system, bubble flow regime started from mono-dispersed homogeneous regime, followed by poly-dispersed homogeneous regime, transition bubble regime and heterogeneous bubble regime with increasing gas flowrates from 3.7 mL/min to 32.7 mL/min. The impacts from operating parameters such as gas flowrate, superficial liquid velocity and gas sparger size on bubble size, velocity and volume fraction have been summarized. In liquid–solid fluidization, different solid fluidization regimes for both particles bed and pellets bed were identified. From the bed expansion results, much higher Umf of 7.8 mm/s from pellets fluidization was observed compared that of 2.3 mm/s in particles fluidization, because the hyphal structures of fungal pellets increased surface friction but also tended to agglomerate. The similar R–Z exponent n (5.7 and 5.5 for pellets and particles, respectively) between pellets and particles was explained by the same solid diameter, but much higher Ut of 436 µm/s in particles bed than that of 196 µm/s in pellets bed is a consequence of the higher density of solid particles. This paper gives insights on the development of MFB and its potential in solid processing.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Zhang Y, Goh K-L, Ng Y-L, Chow Y, Zivkovic V

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: ChemEngineering

Year: 2021

Volume: 5

Issue: 3

Online publication date: 13/09/2021

Acceptance date: 08/09/2021

Date deposited: 11/10/2021

ISSN (electronic): 2305-7084

Publisher: MDPI


DOI: 10.3390/chemengineering5030062


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric