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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

3-D Modeling of Dehydration Kinetics and Shrinkage of Ellipsoidal Fermented Amazonian Cocoa Beans

1
Dipartimento di Ingegneria Chimica, Materiali e Ambiente, Sapienza Università di Roma, Via Eudossiana 18, 00184 Rome, Italy;
2
INSTM Consorzio Interuniversitario Nazionale per la Scienza e Tecnologia dei Materiali, Via G. Giusti 9, 50121 Firenze, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Processes 2020, 8(2), 150; https://doi.org/10.3390/pr8020150
Received: 30 December 2019 / Revised: 19 January 2020 / Accepted: 20 January 2020 / Published: 24 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drying Kinetics and Quality Control in Food Processing)
A recently proposed moving-boundary model for food isothermal dehydration was applied to analyze the dehydration kinetics of ellipsoidal cocoa beans, characterized by a moderate shrinkage and a non-uniform initial distribution of water content between the core and the shell of the bean. The aim is to predict the influence of air velocity and non-uniformity of the initial water distribution on the dehydration rates, as well as the temporal evolution of the water content in the core and in the shell and of the characteristic lengths of the ellipsoidal bean. The model proved capable of accurately describing the two-phases dehydration process: an initial fast dehydration of the shell, characterized by higher dehydration rates, followed by a slower dehydration of the core, characterized by a linear relationship j d = δ ( T ) X r between the dehydration rate j d and the moisture ratio X r . A shortcut method to estimate the effective water diffusivity D is also proposed, deriving from the basic observation that the asymptotic exponential behaviour of the dehydration curve X r ( t ) for an ellipsoidal bean coincides with that of an equivalent sphere, with the same surface-to-volume ratio.
Keywords: drying kinetics; 3-d modeling; moving-boundary model; diffusion coefficient; cocoa beans drying kinetics; 3-d modeling; moving-boundary model; diffusion coefficient; cocoa beans
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MDPI and ACS Style

Adrover, A.; Brasiello, A. 3-D Modeling of Dehydration Kinetics and Shrinkage of Ellipsoidal Fermented Amazonian Cocoa Beans. Processes 2020, 8, 150.

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