Atmospheric freeze drying assisted by power ultrasound

Autores UPV
Año
Revista IOP: Materials Science and Engineering

Abstract

Atmospheric freeze drying (AFD) is considered an alternative to vacuum freeze drying to keep the quality of fresh product. AFD allows continuous drying reducing fix and operating costs, but presents, as main disadvantage, a long drying time required. The application of power ultrasound (US) can accelerate AFD process. The main objective of the present study was to evaluate the application of power ultrasound to improve atmospheric freeze drying of carrot. For that purpose, AFD experiments were carried out with carrot cubes (10 mm side) at constant air velocity (2 ms-1), temperature (-10ºC) and relative humidity (10%) with (20.5 kWm-3, USAFD) and without (AFD) ultrasonic application. A diffusion model was used in order to quantify the influence of US in drying kinetics. To evaluate the quality of dry products, rehydration capacity and textural properties were determined. The US application during AFD of carrot involved the increase of drying rate. The effective moisture diffusivity identified in USAFD was 73% higher than in AFD experiments. On the other hand, the rehydration capacity was higher in USAFD than in AFD and the hardness of dried samples did not show significant (p<0.05) differences. Therefore, US application during AFD significantly (p<0.05) sped-up the drying process preserving the quality properties of the dry product.