Vacuum-assisted microwave drying characteristics of green bell pepper

Vivek Kumar, Shanker L. Shrivastava


Chopped green bell pepper pieces were blanched (95 °C, 5 min) and chemically pretreated (1% potassium metabisulphite solution, 25 min at room temperature) before drying in hot air dryer (HAD) at various temperature ranges (60 – 80 °C). Three vacuum levels (200, 400, 600 mm Hg) and microwave power levels (100, 200, 300 W) were also used to dry green bell pepper samples in a vacuum assisted microwave (VAM) (2.45 GHz, 0.8 kW) dryer. VAM drying methods offered a maximum reduction by four to five times in drying time as compared to that in HAD. The logarithmic model was found to have the best fit based on high R2 and small values of reduced χ2 and RMSE.  VAM method has higher values for effective moisture diffusivity (Deff) and lower values for activation energy (Ea), in comparison to the HAD method. 


green bell pepper; activation energy; drying kinetics; effective moisture diffusivity; logarithmic model; vacuum-assisted microwave drying

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