The Problem


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Vortex Formation is a natural phenomenom affected only by the hemisphere in which it occurs; i.e., rotation changes direction as the vessel being drained crosses the Equator.  This can be most easily observed on a cruise ship, by watching the shower drain off the lavatory drain.

The typical pharmaceutical vessel, with a top opening into a center outlet is especially conducive to the creation of a vortex.  The desire of some users to minimize the size of the transfer line to minimize “hold-up” volume of valuable drugs, when allowed to impact on CIPable design, is the beginning of a long term disaster.  Though low transfer rates may be desirable, drain rates for spray cleaning of a vessel are driven by the diameter of the vessel and the need to spray flush, wash and rinse solutions onto the vessels surfaces at flow rates generally in the range of 2.5 – 3.0 Gpm per foot of circumference.