P18082: Electrical Bioreactor

Problem Definition

Table of Contents

Team Vision for Problem Definition Phase

  1. Evaluate the current lab procedure performed without the electrical bioreactor to determine use case scenario with electrical bioreactor
  2. Identify key constraints and their affect on our project
  3. Research and identify electrical bioreactors on the market used in laboratory research
  4. Identify and distinguish customer requirements of constraints and optimization
  5. Begin risk assessment analysis

Project Summary

Cell culturing is commonly performed on two-dimensional plastic surfaces in carefully monitored environments. Several factors contribute to the environment, namely sterility, temperature, humidity, CO2 levels, and media pH levels. However, these conditions are not fully representative of cell growth in vivo (i.e. in living tissue). As such, culturing cells with varied stimuli is often desired in order to emulate in vivo conditions.

This device will be used by the Biomedical Engineering Department at Rochester Institute of Technology to study precardiomyocytes in its Advanced Cell Culture class taught by Doctor Bailey. The incubator, which houses the bioreactor, will safely keep the culture at the required conditions of sterility, 5% CO_2, and 37 C with a relatively neutral pH for at least 3 weeks, while applying a static or cyclic voltage. The formfactor must fit generic, EVOS, Leica microscopes and utilize LabVIEW and MyDAQ software programs for controlling and monitoring chamber conditions.

Use Cases

FIG4. P18082 Standard Use Case Scenario

FIG4. P18082 Standard Use Case Scenario

Project Goals and Key Deliverables

Project goals and key deliverables are to develop an electrical bioreactor and use a static or cyclic voltage to stimulate the growth and development of precardiomyocytes cells during the BME 470 course taught by Doctor Bailey. The culture will be kept at constant conditions required to stimulate development while in the incubator. The cells will change from one form to another. Further research and analysis will determine the bioreactor’s parameters of compatibility with applied voltage, microscopes, incubator, and software configuration.

Customer Requirements

Fig5. P18082 Customer Requirements

Fig5. P18082 Customer Requirements

Link to live P18082 Customer Requirements

Engineering Requirements (Metrics & Specifications)

FIG6. P18082 Engineering Requirements

FIG6. P18082 Engineering Requirements

Link to live P18082 Engineering Requirements

House of Quality

FIG7. P18082 House of Quality

FIG7. P18082 House of Quality

Link to live P18082 House of Quality


Items Projected Cost
Materials $300
Sensors $100
Cell culture disposables $100
Software Provided

Bioreactor must be compatible with generic, EVOS, and Leica microscopes


LabVIEW and MyDaq must be used to control and monitor conditions

Design Review Materials

Material to be updated at later date.

Plans for Next Phase

1. Evaluate current lab procedure

2. Identify key constrains

3. Benchmark

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