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Experimental Study on Solar-air Drying of Kucha White Apricot

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  2010 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 20 - June 23, 2010  1008931.(doi:10.13031/2013.29763)
Authors:   Rouzi Amuti, Zhihuai Mao, Feng Li, Yanhong Liu, Zebin Gao
Keywords:   Apricot, Solar drying, Heated air drying, Drying characteristics

As an inexhaustible and environmentally friendly energy, solar energy has good potential in drying of agricultural products. This study explored the application of solar energy on drying of Kucha white apricot using integrative solar-air drier. The influences of preliminary treatment, air temperature and air velocity on microbial safety, drying rate and apricot quality were studied. Drying characteristic equations were established. Water flushing guaranteed better microbial safety, splitting the apricot increased the drying rate. Drying rate increased with the increase of air temperature and air velocity. But increasing air temperature above 85C resulted in poor apricot quality and air speed had little effect on the drying rate above 5.5 m/s. Under optimized condition, where air temperature was 65C and air velocity was 11.5m/s, it took 32 h to dry pitted apricot from 79% to 18% moisture content (wet basis). The developed equipment and technology can be further applied to other fruit and vegetable drying processes.

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