Interesting idea. Thanksfully our favorite brewing scientist has a DO meter. Maybe he'll find out for us.
. I have thought of that method as well and will put it on my list of things to try.
One reason why shaking is so effective is that the amount of oxygen you actually need to get to ~8 ppm in the wort only a small part of what is actually available in the head space. This is also why I have been proposing a fairly simple and foolproof procedure for a large starter:
- boil 2.5 and let cool 2 gal of water
- boil and let cool .5 – 1 gal of wort (you may combine this with the water before boiling)
- sanitize a carboy and add water and wort.
- close carboy top and shake extensively to dissolve as much head space O2 as possible.
- add yeast and let ferment it out.
- decant spent starter beer and rack “production” wort on top of the yeast. Aerate wort and resuspend the yeast.
I haven’t tried this yet but the idea is that you have a large volume of diluted wort which is not only less stressful on the yeast but it is also able to hold much more O2 per yeast cell and thus there should either be more growth or healthier, i.e. sterol richer, yeast cells. I don’t know how it would compare to a stirred starter though.