Shown is an operator adding a powdered medium component to the receiving cone of a production scale blender (a Tri-blender by Tri-Clover Corp.). The two centrifugal pumps on the floor are pumping supply and return water to and from a 12,000 liter fermenter, recirculating it, which eventually becomes a blended medium in the fermenter. This is a much more efficient method of blending powdered medium components into water than a mix tank with agitator (14, 68, 73, 195, 230).
This Operator is using a sinusoidal "finger" pump to transfer inoculum (a starter culture of microorganisms) from an aspirator bottle into a 120 liter fermenter under 4 PSI pressure. Doing this under slight pressure aids in maintaining aseptic transfer conditions. Inoculum volume is usually 1 - 5 % of fermenter volume. It originates as a combination of several shake flasks, the last stage of the "seed build-up" sequence of procedures in the Production Plant Microbiology Laboratory (195, 230, 255, 258).
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