Modelling of the fluid dynamic processes in a high-recirculation airlift reactor

David Sanders, Howard Cawte, Adam Hudson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This paper describes the creation of two models of the steady-state fluid dynamic processes occurring in a high-recirculation airlift reactor. The new models were created to provide information to assist in the design of a reactor, in particular considering the selection of parameters to adjust in order to achieve a steady state solution. The modelling of two-phase flow of air and water in small-scale airlift bioreactors is considered. This modelling was applied to the high-recirculation airlift reactor process. New computer simulations were created and tests performed to evaluate the new models. The results of this evaluation are presented. The evaluation showed that variation of the superficial gas velocity or the simultaneous variation of the downcomer and riser diameters could be used to produce a steady-state design solution.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)487–500
    JournalInternational Journal of Energy Research
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - May 2001


    • airlift
    • wastewater
    • two-phase flow
    • fluid dynamics
    • computer simulation
    • biological reactor


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