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Fermentation vesel.

Fermentation vesel.
3 3 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 25cm


Penicillin production by the mould Penicillium needs oxygen, unlike beer production from yeast. Therefore the fungus is grown on the surface of a shallow nutrient soup. The sterilisable containers are plugged with cotton wool to stop the air bringing in common bacteria which destroy penicillin. These specially designed flat, stackable vesels proved ideal in the early production work.

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© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

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