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Microwave-convective drying of food materials: A critical review

Kumar, C., Karim, M. A.
Critical reviews in food science and nutrition 2019 v.59 no.3 pp. 379-394
convection, drying, food industry, food quality, industrial applications, mathematical models
Microwave convective drying (MCD) is gaining increasing interest due to its unique volumetric heating capability and ability to significantly reduce drying time and improve food quality. The main objective of this paper is to discuss, critically analyze and evaluate the recent advances in MCD and suggest the future directions in this field. The main focus of this paper is the mathematical modeling and experimental investigations in microwave convective drying of food materials. Recent developments in mathematical modeling of MCD is discussed and existing experimental setup and their advantages and disadvantages are discussed and analysed. Long drying time is a concern in food industries. Reductions in drying time by applying MCD compared to convection drying are calculated and discussed. It was apparent that the proper integration of mathematical modeling and experimental technique is the best way to maximize the advantages of this drying method. Although a plethora of research is being carried out on this topic, there is still need for research to develop fundamental modeling to optimize the process parameters and scale up this technology for the industrial application. Overall, the review provides an in-depth insight into the latest development of MCD and its mathematical modeling approaches and will hopefully serve to inspire future work in the field.