Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Microwaves offer fat chance to probe supermarket food

20.09.2007
Microwaves used for zapping instant meals can also be used to determine the fat and salt content of supermarket food, according to research carried out at two Manchester universities.

One of the research team, PhD student Sing Kwei Ng, has scooped a top industry prize for his work to determine the amount of fat in beef.

His award-winning paper detailing initial results will be presented at the LMC Congress: Innovations in Food Technology conference in Denmark, today (Thursday 20 September 2007).

The Microwave Profiler project is being led by Professor Andrew Gibson from The University of Manchester’s Microwave and Communication Group, working with The School of Materials and Professor Paul Ainsworth from the Department of Food and Tourism Management at Manchester Metropolitan University.

The study began after researchers realised that as microwaves heat different types of food at different rates, they must also be sensitive to food content such as water, salt and fat.

The aim of the project is to develop a new fast and non-invasive method of predicting the fat content in meat products.

This type of constant real-time monitoring during the production process could help reduce waste, maximise yield, reduce laboratory testing and save energy.

Sing Kwei said: “Greater awareness regarding food safety and health issues means that consumers are now more concerned than ever about meat products being safe and fresh with a low fat content.

“Food contents and ingredients now have to be disclosed under the European Union legislation but cannot currently be measured quickly or cost-effectively.

“The meat industry is under extreme pressure to find new cost effective methods of meat quality evaluation at every level of food processing. Knowledge of the fat content of meat products is critical.

“The potential of our system to overcome current technical barriers to practical measuring instruments could significantly impact upon food processing and reprocessing technology.”

The research team has carried out successful pilot studies to determine the fibre content in waste products produced by the brewing industry, the moisture content in wheat grain and the salt content of supermarket food.

But they say more research on the capabilities of microwave sensors in industrial conditions is needed before the method can be properly introduced.

Engineers working on the Microwave Profiler project are hoping to develop robust and portable microwave-based instruments that are capable of taking measurements in industrial or laboratory conditions.

The £400,000 study is being funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

Sing Kwei, who is enrolled at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) but is studying for his PhD at both Manchester universities, was recently given the Institute of Food Science and Technology’s Young Scientist Award.

Jon Keighren | alfa
Further information:
http://www.manchester.ac.uk/eps

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

nachricht What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>