Heat pump dehydrator is a modern technology that can be used to dry different products such as fruits, vegetables, herbs and meats. It can provide a high quality dried product with the same sensory characteristics as commercially-dried products. It uses energy-efficient heating, cooling and humidity control. It can also reduce the drying time by half compared with conventional sun drying, and it consumes less fossil fuel energy.
Heat Pumps are able to use renewable sources of energy to perform a range of functions such as heating, cooling, humidification and dehumidification. This makes it an ideal choice for a wide variety of applications such as food processing, medical and aerospace engineering.
A large number of studies have been conducted on the combined use of heat pumps and drying methods. These studies have shown that the combination of drying methods can improve product quality and lower energy consumption compared with single-method drying.
In particular, combining convection drying with heat pump drying allows the production of a porous dried product that is comparable to vacuum freeze-drying (VFD) with lower production costs and energy consumption (Clausertsan et al., 2007).
Another example of a heat-pump assisted drying technique is the use of reduced air temperature at the beginning of drying followed by increasing the temperature as the drying progresses. This method can reduce the non-evaporable water loss (NEWL) and improve product yield.
In addition, radio frequency and microwave energy can be combined with heat-pump drying to increase the efficiency of the drying process. This can help to achieve better moisture removal, faster drying rate and a more uniform distribution of the product in the dryer (Marshall and Metaxas, 1998). heat pump dehydrator