New technologies: Power ultrasound
Power ultrasound (typically in the range of 20kHz to 100kHz) has numerous non-preservation applications such as cutting, cleaning, emulsifying, de-gassing and foam breaking. It is not thought to be currently in use for microbiological inactivation in food production but there is evidence at laboratory scale demonstrating anti-microbial effects. Ultrasound could prove very useful as a tool for augmenting conventional heating processes and is already being used for this purpose in some food processing facilities. Power ultrasound can induce permanent and, in some circumstances, reversible viscosity modification which can be useful to improve the efficiency of down-stream processes that are rate limited by viscosity. Examples include spray driers, filtration and batch or continuous-flow heating operations.
We currently have Power ultrasound equipment from Cavitus on site for use in research and private contract work. This equipment can be operated in a continuous flow or in batch mode.
R&D report 340: Power ultrasound and its use for modification of food viscosity
2012 Modification of food viscosity using power ultrasound treatment
2011 Power ultrasound thinning of starch
Poster: Ultrasound thinning
Bulletins 36 and 41