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Participating Countries:

Algeria

Argentina

Australia

Austria

Belgium

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bulgaria

Croatia

Czech Republic

Denmark

Finland

France

FYR of Macedonia

Germany

Greece

Iceland

Ireland

Israel

Italy

Lithuania

Morocco

Netherlands

New Zealand

Poland

Portugal

Romania

Russian Federation

Serbia

Slovenia

Spain

Sweden

Switzerland

Turkey

Ukraine

United Kingdom

United States

Member area provided by LTFE
COST is supported by the EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020
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ProdAl Scarl

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Via Ponte don Melillo
84084 Fisciano (SA)
Italy

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Brief presentation of the institution

ProdAl is a highly original institution started in 2006, representing the first experience in Italy acting as a link between public research institutions in the agro-food field, and a unique big laboratory for research, development and technology transfer in the service of enterprises. ProdAl has advanced laboratories dedicated to the physicochemical, sensory, microbiological and nutritional characterization of foodstuff, and to food processing by means of traditional and innovative technologies. Several bench-top and pilot plants for the application of novel technologies (High Hydrostatic Pressure, High Pressure Homogenization, Pulsed Electric Fields, Ohmic Heating, Pulsed Light), for food packaging (MAP, Aseptic packaging, Extruders for multi-layers film productions) are available for the design of new processing cycles and/or the formulation of new foodstuffs. ProdAl laboratories cover a total area of about 1200 m2. R&D activities are addressed to the use of innovative technologies for the production of new to the market food products with high value-added or enhanced nutritional and sensorial characteristics. The members - an interdisciplinary team of engineers, biologists, chemists and economists - are involved in research, services in favour of pubic institutions and private companies, preparation of project proposals and education (undergraduate as well as graduate thesis, PhD thesis). ProdAl is located in Fisciano, in the Campus of the University of Salerno, 12 kilometers far from the City of Salerno.

Main Electroporation related topics

Major research activity in our group is membrane electroporation of biological (plant, microbial and algae) cells with their application in food industry the recover valuable compound from food and food by-products as well as to sanitize food matrices. In this frame we are involved in searching optimal processing conditions which include the study – numerically and experimentally- of the spatial distribution of the electric field strength inside the treatment chamber, the release of metal from the electrodes and testing of new electrode materials and processing conditions which minimize electrochemical reactions at electrode-solution interface. We are also testing the combination of electroporation technique with other preservatives hurdles – antimicrobial, high pressure CO2- with the aim to improve the effectiveness of the treatment with the minimum energy consumption.

Main Electroporation related research techniques and equipment

  • Laboratory scale PEF system 1 - Food Sanitization Bach continuous mode, exponentially decay pulses, 20kV, 1.6kW, 1-100µs, 1-400Hz, parallel plate chamber, flow rate: 0-10L/h
  • Laboratory scale PEF system 2 - Food Sanitization Continuous mode, monopolar/bipolar square wave pulses, 25kV, 25kW, 100A, 1-10µs, 1Hz-1kHz, co-field chambers, flow rate: 0-30L/h
  • Laboratory scale continuous flow PEF-High Pressure CO2 (HPCD) system - Food Sanitization - PEF - Diversified Technology Inc., Bedford, WA, USA: monopolar/bipolar square wave pulses, 25kV, 25kW, 100A, 1-10 µs, 1Hz-1kHz, co-field chambers, flow rate: 0-2L/h; HPCD: 20MPa, 20-50°C, flow rate: 0-2L/h
  • Pilot scale continuous flow PEF system - Food Sanitization Diversified Technology Inc., Bedford, WA, USA, monopolar/bipolar square wave pulses, 25 kV, 25 kW, 100A, 1-10 µs, 1Hz-1kHz, co-field chambers, flow rate: 0-200 L/h; aseptic “bag in box” type filler
  • Laboratory scale PEF system 1 - Food Extraction, Pulse generator Service Eléctronique, France, batch mode, monopolar square wave pulses, 1.5kV, 3kW, 20A, 10µs-10ms, 0-1000Hz, Parallel plate chamber flow rate: 5-25mL
  • Laboratory scale PEF system 2 - Food Extraction PG-3 Solid State Pulse Generator, ScanDinova, Sweden, Batch/continuous mode, monopolar square wave pulses, 25kV, 20kW, 500A, 1-25µs, 1-450Hz, Parallel plate chamber flow rate: 10-600mL, co-field chambers flow rate: 1-50 L/h
  • Impedance analyser, 1260 Solartron, UK, sinusoidal wave, 10µHz-32MHz, 1-3V, 20-60mA
  • Oscilloscope, Tektronix, TDS 3034B and 3014B, Wilsonwille, OR, USA
  • High Voltage probe , Tektronix, P6015A, Wilsonwille, OR, USA
  • Current probe, Rogowsky coil, 2-0.1 Stangenes, Inc., USA
  • Electrical conductivity meter, Cond 315i WTW
  • ICP-MS (Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry, Agilent 7500C)

Research topics, techniques and equipment not related to Electroporation

High Hydrostatic Pressure (HHP)
Description: It's a novel non-thermal technology, applicable to the pasteurization/ sterilization of liquid, solid, solid foods suspended in liquid carrier and able to preserve the nutritional and "fresh-like" properties of the raw materials.Compared to the other non-thermal technologies, the high pressure treatment is homogenous, independent on the geometry or the dimensions of the product, and applicable in batch or semi-continuous solutions.New applicative areas are the production of fruit ingredients for pastry, yogurt, dressings and the application to allergenic foods.
Available Equipment:

  • Multivessel High Pressure Unit (U111, Unipress, Poland): 5 reactors of 10 ml, maximum pressure:700 MPa, Temperature range:-40-120°C
  • HP-LT unit (microscopic cell, Unipress, Poland): one transparent reactor of 200 ul, maximum pressure:500 MPa, Temperature range:-50-25°C
  • Ultra High Pressure (U22, Unipress, Poland): one reactor of 50 ml, unit maximum pressure:1400 MPa, Temperature range:25-120°C
  • High Pressure Pilot scale Mini Foodlab (FPG5620, Stansted Fluid Power, UK): one reactor of 500 ml, unit maximum pressure:900 MPa, Temperature range:25-90°C
  • High Pressure Pilot scale Foodlab (Stansted Fluid Power, UK): one reactor of 3 l, unit maximum pressure:600 MPa, Temperature range:25-90°C
     

 Pulsed Light (PL)

Description: Pulsed light (PL) is one of the most promising non-thermal decontamination technologies for food products. This technology, which can be considered an alternative to continuous UV light treatment for rapid and effective microbial inactivation in solid and liquid foods, involves a wide broad-spectrum light in the wavelengths range of 100-1100 nm, with approximately 54% of energy emitted in the ultraviolet range. During the PL treatment, electrical energy cyclically accumulated in a high power capacitor is released over an inert gas (e.g. xenon) lamp as intermittent intense short pulses of light, which typically last for a few hundred microseconds, to considerably magnify the power.
Application areas: microbial decontamination of solid food and (clear) liquid food, medical equipment, packaging materials, air. PL light can be also used to stimulate the sintesys of bioactives compounds in food products.

Available Equipment:

  • SteriPulse®-XL 3000 Pulsed light Sterilization System (Xenon Corp., Wilmington, Mass., USA): power/control module, a linear (16”) Xenon flash lamp and a lamp housing module. The system generated 3 pulses/s (pulse width 360 us) of polychromatic light in the wavelengths range of 180 to 1100 nm.

Brief information on available facilites

  • laboratory for chemical analyses
  • laboratory for microbiological analyses
  • laboratory for measurement of physical properties of foods
  • food processing facilities in lab scale
  •  food processing facilities in pilot scale
  • facilities for computation, simulation, and programming
  • 25-seats classroom with video projector

Willingness to accept/host visiting researchers

Publications

Members:

Project Office

Working groups

Steering Committee

Founding members

DC Rapporteurs

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