How Can Ultrasound Make Food Sound?

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The use of acoustic energy as a new processing modality or a processing aid has been explored in various industrial sectors for over fifty years. Its applications in food processing and preservation are relatively new. This presentation summarizes the research activities in Dr. Feng’s lab in the past 20 years, aiming to provide insights into the interactions between (power) ultrasound and food ingredients and contaminants, as well as an introduction to ultrasound’s current and potential applications in different food processing and preservation unit operations.  Applications of ultrasound in food processing are categorized by the acoustic power density (APD) in the system.  Its use as a non-thermal processing method, as well as in combination with other energy forms for process enhancement, is reviewed. The future development of and precautions for (power) ultrasound applications are also discussed.

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Feng is the Blue Cross Blue Shield Endowed Professor of Urban Food Systems at North Carolina A&T State University (NC A&T). Dr. Feng’s research focuses on high intensity ultrasound (power ultrasound) and its application in food processing and preservation, new physical and chemical treatments for enhancing the safety and quality of fresh and fresh-cut produce, plant protein based nano- and micro-structures for protection and delivery of bioactive compounds, novel deconstruction methods for biofuel and value-added product production from biomass, sustainable food systems, and novel drying technologies. Dr. Feng is a member of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE), and the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE). Dr. Feng has secured US$35.9 million as PI and Co-PI for his research program.  He has published three books, 153 peer-reviewed journal articles, and 23 book chapters in the areas of new food processing innovation, ultrasound application, food safety engineering, and bioprocess engineering. In addition, Dr. Feng has given 65 invited talks and presented over 200 poster presentations at national and international scientific meetings.

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