High Flow Sterile Connectors For Single-Use Applications
By Brent Bushnell, Colder Products Company
When the first sterile connectors were launched in the early 2000s, single-use systems and bioreactors where focused on small scale production at the lower end of pilot plant range. Maximum single-use bioreactors ranged from 200 to 500L and although sterile hold bags of 1000 to 2000L were used, flow rates of 20L per minute were sufficient in most cases. Sterile connectors designed around 1/2" I.D. formats performed well for the majority of single-use applications at that time.
Over the past decade, two developments have increased demand for high flow rate connectors: size advances in single-use bioreactors up to 2000L and implementation of single-use systems for downstream processes such as filtration requiring high flow rate circulation. As a result, the bioprocess market has desired new developments for high flow connectors.