In this research we analyze the steady-state operation of a continuous flow bioreactor, with or without recycle, and an idealized or nonidealized continuous flow membrane reactor. The model extends to include a fixed bed reactor where a fraction of the biomass is detached by the flow. The reaction is assumed to be governed by Tessier growth kinetics. We show that a flow reactor with idealized recycle has the same performance as an idealized membrane reactor and that the performance of a nonidealized membrane reactor is identical to that of an appropriately defined continuous flow bioreactor with nonidealized recycle. The performance of all three reactor types can therefore be obtained by analyzing a flow reactor with recycle. The steady states of the recycle model are found and their stability determined as a function of the residence time. The performance of the reactor at large residence times is obtained.
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