Parameters characterization of pulsatile liquid flow in bioreactor closed microchannel at orbital station

Rocket and space engineering


Petrov V. A.1*, Semyonova O. V.1**, Tonevitskaia S. A.2***, Khaustov A. I.1****

1. Moscow Aviation Institute (National Research University), 4, Volokolamskoe shosse, Moscow, А-80, GSP-3, 125993, Russia
2. Moscow State University of Mechanical Engineering (MAMI), 38, Bolshaya Semenovskaya str., Moscow, 107023, Russia

****e-mail: khaustov.alex@mail.r


This work aims at main physical parameters characterization of pulsating flow of nourishing liquid in closed micro channels (100 μm height, 500 μm width) of bioreactors for cells cultivation onboard the orbital station

A series of experiments allowing consider pulsating nature of the fluid flow in the channels and determine the speed and flow rate of the liquid delivered to the cells without tracer agents insertion was conducted on a specially designed stand.

According to the data obtained from the pressure sensors integrated into the fluid micro passages, the dependencies of fluid flow rate and speed versus various pressure values (±10 kPa, ±30 kPa, ±50 kPa) and frequencies (: 0.1 Hz, 1 Hz, 2 Hz, 3 Hz) were determined.

Methodology of liquid flow in micro channels characterization, allowing estimate the values of pressure, speed and flow rate of liquid delivered to the cells without insertion of tracer agents was experimentally evaluated.

Dependencies of pulsatile liquid flow parameters versus operating modes of the pump in the microchannel of bioreactor for biological research on orbital station were obtained. Our study shows that increase of operating frequency of pump valves leads to an increase of liquid flow rate and average velocity of nourishing liquid. At the same time, flow velocity peak or maximum instantaneous values for various cycles of the pump operation are equal in amplitudes and do not depend on operation frequency of pump valves.

The obtained experimental dependencies of pressure losses in microchannel segment versus the flow rate in it give the possibility to determine the flow rate in closed microchannel at any operating mode of bioreactor without its integrity violation prior to its proper use.


microchannel, flow rate, pressure drop, pulsatile liquid flow


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