The Meltdown Analyzer
With summer approaching, ice cream sales will begin to soar. As children and adults alike enjoy their sweet treats, few will consider the science and engineering that goes into making a perfect batch of ice cream. It was a top concern of Memmert and Certa Fides though when they co-developed the Meltdown Analyzer.
Adrian Duerig, founder of Certa Fides GmbH, was working with the Laboratory for Food Process Engineering at ETH Zurich to quantify the benefits of low temperature extrusion (LTE), a freezing step in the manufacturing of ice cream.
In ice cream, there are three components that give it its creamy texture and influence how it will melt on the tongue and in warm temperatures – air cells, ice crystals, and fat globules. LTE was meant to reduce the amount of air cells and ice crystals, while improving fat destabilization or agglomeration, which would lead to a creamier mouthfeel.
Ice Cream Recipes
No two ice cream recipes are the same though. As one can imagine, adding fruit and other flavorings, in addition to changing the base recipe can make significant impact on how these three components show up in the final product. Ice cream manufacturers need a way to test and analyze each of their recipes to ensure they don’t melt too quickly and continue to have a desirable texture as they melt.
The team conducting this initial LTE research immediately saw a gap in technology. There wasn’t a suitable piece of equipment that would allow them to easily test, measure, and analyze melt-down behavior. Adrian Duerig and Memmert began working together to find a solution.
The Peltier Cooled Incubator IPP 500 was chosen as the base for what would become the Certa Fides’ Meltdown Analyzer. Peltier technology provided vibration free cooling, which ensured there would be no mechanical impact to the ice cream, and precise temperature control.
Certa Fides provided application-specific components like weighing cells, cameras, illumination units, and comprehensive measuring and evaluation software. The end result was the Meltdown Analyzer, which measures the meltdown behavior of ice cream by collecting weight, temperature, and humidity data every few seconds, in addition to snapping photos for further analysis.
To learn more about the Certa Fides’ Meltdown Analyzer, read the full case study at AtmoSAFE or visit the Certa Fides’ website. If you’re interested in working with Memmert on a custom project like this one, contact us!