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Optimization of drying process by an agitator/mixer dryer with vacuum and infrared radiation


The objectives of present research work are to adequate and to test the agitator/mixer dryer, industrial patent no 0506639-5, supported by FAPESP. The dryer consists in a cylindrical body with perforated bottom, which admits drying air to interior of cylinder after crossing the plenum. The flow of product is permitted by rotation of flat plate connected in axis moved by gear reducer. In the interior of the dryer, infrared emitters can be used for heating the material. The dryer also presents a centrifugal fan, a heating system by electrical resistances, tubes and valves to regulating and reusing of drying air. The regulation valves permit regulation of pressure and air flow rates, including vacuum process. The important parameters to study are: temperature, agitator/mixer rotation, air and feed flow. The yield of process of optimum process condition to produce excellent product quality will be determined. The physical properties, by image analysis from scanning electron microscopy, glass transition and electric consumption during process by electric constants of products obtained on optimum condition will be determined. The biological material to be tested is chicory root. In this research work, two under graduation students will be trained and two international papers will be published. (AU)

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