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The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde's Open Access research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by Strathclyde researchers, including by researchers from the Physical Activity for Health Group based within the School of Psychological Sciences & Health. Research here seeks to better understand how and why physical activity improves health, gain a better understanding of the amount, intensity, and type of physical activity needed for health benefits, and evaluate the effect of interventions to promote physical activity.

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A solar air heater with composite-absorber systems for food dehydration

Madhlopa, A. and Jones, S.A. and Saka, J.D.K. (2002) A solar air heater with composite-absorber systems for food dehydration. Renewable Energy, 27 (1). pp. 27-37. ISSN 0960-1481

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Abstract

Development of appropriate technologies for conversion of solar radiation to thermal energy is essential for food preservation. A solar air heater, comprising two absorber systems in a single flat-plate collector, was designed on the principles of psychrometry. The heater was integrated to a drying chamber for food dehydration. This collector design offered flexibility in manual adjustment of the thermal characteristics of the solar dryer. The performance of the dryer was evaluated by drying fresh samples of mango (Mangifera indicus). Both fresh and dried mango samples were analysed for moisture content (MC), pH and ascorbic acid. During the dehydration period, meteorological measurements were made. The air heater converted up to 21.3% of solar radiation to thermal power, and raised the temperature of the drying air from about 31.7 °C to 40.1 °C around noon. The dryer reduced the MC of sliced fresh mangoes from about 85% (w/w) to 13% (w/w) on wet basis, and retained 74% of ascorbic acid. It was found that the dryer was suitable for preservation of mangoes and other fresh foods.