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The effect of oxygen-supply rates on bacterial growth was studied in commercially available unbaffled and baffled flasks with the use of Escherichia coli in a synthetic medium as a test system. The amount of growth obtained depended on the oxygen-supply rate. Based on oxygen-absorption rates (OAR) measured by the rate of sulfite oxidation, equal OAR values in different types of flasks did not give equal amounts of growth. However, growth was essentially equal at the equal sulfite-oxidation rates when these were determined in the presence of killed whole cultures. Specific growth rates were reduced only at oxygen-supply rates much lower than those at which the total amount of growth was reduced. For the physical set-up used in this work and with the biological system employed, Bellco 598 flasks and flasks fitted with Biotech stainless-steel baffles gave satisfactory results at workable broth volumes; unbaffled and Bellco 600 flasks did not.