The five main reasons why you should focus your attention on selecting the right glass components for your PBR [Free Guide]
You are interested in a glass photobioreactor (PBR). Perhaps you already have one and are thinking of expanding or replacing it. If your main concerns are the lifetime of the PBR system and the total cost of ownership, you are definitely making the right choice with a glass PBR.
However even when choosing among glass PBRs, there are significant differences. These differences can have a profound impact on the final system performance and therefore it is paramount that you are aware of them.
Only the right glass ensures a longer operating life
Not all glass is the same. For the installation and use of glass in a PBR the following points should be considered: The glass should be UV and chemically stable, and for some applications, the glass has to be resistant also to salt water. To ensure that you can produce algae efficiently over a long period of time, you should consider using the best glass for your application.
Thin walled tubing leads to higher efficiency
Glass tubing for PBRs is available in various wall thicknesses. Common wall thicknesses lie between 2.5 – 3.3mm. It has been shown that the wall thickness of glass tubing is a parameter that has an influence on the productivity of a reactor. In a comparative test, for instance, it is shown that the thinner walled tubing yielded 10% more algae.
Longer tubing sections lead to less biofouling
The more tube segments that are needed and interconnected within a PBR system, the higher the chance for the formation of biofilm. In the areas where the tubes are connected with couplings, it is unavoidable that small crevices occur, which form the ideal breeding ground for bacteria. Therefore, the length of the tube segments play a major role in how susceptible a PBR is to biofouling.
Tighter tolerances on tube lengths facilitate installation
Within a PBR, several tubes (often up to 10) are connected with each other in one plane. At the end of such a plane a u-bend or manifold connects to the next higher or lower plane of tubing. In order for these end manifolds to connect correctly to the next planes, the tube lengths in all planes should be evenly sized in length. Otherwise, the PBR installation can become very problematic.
Less hassle due to less breakage
Glass can break. But it doesn’t have to. Especially when the glass tubes are produced using the best possible production processes and tube end finishes. Which are then packed in break resistant packing for transport. In this way you can save yourself time and effort and build up your PBR without breakage and put it straight into operation. Instead of having to deal with 20% or more breakage when using the wrong glass.
We comprehensively cover these five aspects in our guide “Why is a photobioreactor made from high end glass far more efficient?”. It provides you with a detailed information base regarding the type of glass tubes which are most suitable for the application in your PBR.
In this guide you will learn:
- What is a suitable glass for PBR use?
- Why is the glass wall thickness important?
- Why are long tube lengths preferable?
- Why can tube length tolerance variations lead to problems?
- What should you consider to avoid glass breakage?
Download your guide here for free: The five main reasons why you should focus your attention on selecting the right glass components