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Membranes 2017, 7(2), 19;

Apparent Interfacial Tension Effects in Protein Stabilized Emulsions Prepared with Microstructured Systems

Departament d’Enginyeria Química, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Avda. Països Catalans 26, Tarragona 43007, Spain
Food Process Engineering Group, Wageningen University, Bornse Weilanden 9, 6708 WG Wageningen, The Netherlands
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Lidietta Giorno and Emma Piacentini
Received: 26 January 2017 / Revised: 17 March 2017 / Accepted: 21 March 2017 / Published: 25 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Membrane Emulsification)
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Proteins are mostly used to stabilize food emulsions; however, production of protein containing emulsions is notoriously difficult to capture in scaling relations due to the complex behavior of proteins in interfaces, in combination with the dynamic nature of the emulsification process. Here, we investigate premix membrane emulsification and use the Ohnesorge number to derive a scaling relation for emulsions prepared with whey protein, bovine serum albumin (BSA), and a standard emulsifier Tween 20, at various concentrations (0.1%, 0.5%, 1.25% and 2%). In the Ohnesorge number, viscous, inertia, and interfacial tension forces are captured, and most of the parameters can be measured with great accuracy, with the exception of the interfacial tension. We used microfluidic Y-junctions to estimate the apparent interfacial tension at throughputs comparable to those in premix emulsification, and found a unifying relation. We next used this relation to plot the Ohnesorge number versus P-ratio defined as the applied pressure over the Laplace pressure of the premix droplet. The measured values all showed a decreasing Ohnesorge number at increasing P-ratio; the differences between regular surfactants and proteins being systematic. The surfactants were more efficient in droplet size reduction, and it is expected that the differences were caused by the complex behavior of proteins in the interface (visco-elastic film formation). The differences between BSA and whey protein were relatively small, and their behavior coincided with that of low Tween concentration (0.1%), which deviated from the behavior at higher concentrations. View Full-Text
Keywords: emulsion; premix membrane emulsification; microfluidic devices; proteins; interfacial tension emulsion; premix membrane emulsification; microfluidic devices; proteins; interfacial tension

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Güell, C.; Ferrando, M.; Trentin, A.; Schroën, K. Apparent Interfacial Tension Effects in Protein Stabilized Emulsions Prepared with Microstructured Systems. Membranes 2017, 7, 19.

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