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Open AccessArticle

Microwave Plasma Torch Generated in Argon for Small Berries Surface Treatment

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Medical Faculty, Medical University–Sofia, 1 Georgi Sofiiski Boulevard, 1431 Sofia, Bulgaria
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Faculty of Physics, Sofia University, 5 James Bourchier Boulevard, 1164 Sofia, Bulgaria
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Faculty of Forest Industry, University of Forestry, 10 Kliment Ohridski Boulevard, 1797 Sofia, Bulgaria
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DLTIS, Sofia University, 27 Kosta Loulchev Street, 1164 Sofia, Bulgaria
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AgroBioInstitute, 8 Dragan Tsankov Boulevard, 1164 Sofia, Bulgaria
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Faculty of Chemistry, Brno University of Technology, Purkyňova 118, 612 00 Brno, Czech Republic
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(10), 1870; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8101870
Received: 31 August 2018 / Revised: 7 October 2018 / Accepted: 8 October 2018 / Published: 10 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cold Plasma Treatment for Food Safety and Quality)
Demand for food quality and extended freshness without the use of harmful chemicals has become a major topic over the last decade. New technologies are using UV light, strong electric field, ozone and other reactive agents to decontaminate food surfaces. The low-power non-equilibrium (cold) atmospheric pressure operating plasmas effectively combines all the qualities mentioned above and thus, due to their synergetic influence, promising results in fruit surface decontamination can be obtained. The present paper focuses on the applicability of the recently developed microwave surface wave sustained plasma torch for the treatment of selected small fruit. Optical emission spectroscopy is used for the determination of plasma active particles (radicals, UV light) and plasma parameters during the fruit treatment. The infrared camera images confirm low and fully applicable heating of the treated surface that ensures no fruit quality changes. The detailed study shows that the efficiency of the microbial decontamination of selected fruits naturally contaminated by microorganisms is strongly dependent on the fruit surface shape. The decontamination of the rough strawberry surface seems inefficient using the current configuration, but for smooth berries promising results were obtained. Finally, antioxidant activity measurements demonstrate no changes due to plasma treatment. The results confirm that the MW surface wave sustained discharge is applicable to fruit surface decontamination. View Full-Text
Keywords: microwave discharge; surface wave sustained discharge; atmospheric pressure plasma torch; low-temperature plasma; plasma diagnostics; active particles’ distribution; biomedical plasma applications; food treatment and sterilization microwave discharge; surface wave sustained discharge; atmospheric pressure plasma torch; low-temperature plasma; plasma diagnostics; active particles’ distribution; biomedical plasma applications; food treatment and sterilization
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bogdanov, T.; Tsonev, I.; Marinova, P.; Benova, E.; Rusanov, K.; Rusanova, M.; Atanassov, I.; Kozáková, Z.; Krčma, F. Microwave Plasma Torch Generated in Argon for Small Berries Surface Treatment. Appl. Sci. 2018, 8, 1870.

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