When companies desire to increase the volume and scale up their production using a non-homogeneous magnetic separation rack, they use higher magnetic forces in order to separate the biomagnetic beads. As a result, the forces experienced by the beads nearest the magnet are extremely high. In addition, the time of separation also needs to be increased substantially when the volume is increased in order to collect an acceptable percentage of beads in a non-homogeneous system.
This post is about biomagnetic separation with a magnetic separation rack, and how to scale-up this process. If you are interested in this topic, download our free ebook The Basic Guide to Scale-up Biomagnetic Separation Processes:
Working with a larger magnetic separation rack
It is known that the larger the magnet that is used in the system, the longer the separation time required to achieve the same or similar bead yield as in smaller production sizes.
Longer separation times combined with exposure to very high magnetic forces during that time results in an increase in the formation of irreversibly aggregated bead clumps. This problem decreases yield and forces the use of extraordinary resuspension methods such as sonication.
Sonication method in order to resuspend these clumps adds steps to the separation process which results in a longer time to produce the lot, larger investment of time and money into the process, a longer time to develop the process and more resources necessary in order to validate the process.
You can try to avoid these problems by using a force that is low enough such that you will not be exposing beads to such a high magnetic force over time, but this cannot be done with non-homogeneous magnetic separation rack without greatly increasing magnetic bead losses or without using exponentially longer separation times.
Advantages of homogeneous separation systems
Using homogeneous separation systems, however, you can both decrease the force and decrease the separation time. The separation time in these systems will be proportional to the diameter of the vessel. Due to the mild force and short separation times irreversible aggregation problems are avoided when using homogenous biomagnetic separation systems.
Don't forget to check these posts from our blog in order to get a deeper insight into the scaling-up of biomagnetic separation processes:
- When Scaling Up Biomagnetic Separation, Should You Use Electromagnets or Permanent Magnets?
- What are the Safety Issues with Large Magnetic Separation Systems?
- What is the Best Way to Scale Up the Separation Time Parameter?