Essential Analytical Techniques for Food Powder Characterization: From R&D to Manufacturing

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Essential Analytical Techniques for Food Powder Characterization: From R&D to Manufacturing

Published on ‎04-03-2023 03:12 PM by | Updated on ‎06-29-2023 01:26 PM

A thorough knowledge of size, porosity, and surface area is important in characterizing food powders. Furthermore, predicting the flow behavior of food powders is important to ensure no unexpected issues are encountered during handling in industrial processing.This webinar will focus on technologies that enable powder size, surface area, porosity, and flow evaluation (via powder rheology). A good understanding of these powder parameters, along with the flowability of the powders, paves the way towards optimizing process conditions to achieve a quality final product.  
Effects of both internal influences like particle shape, size, size distribution, density, as well as external influences like humidity, temperature, and degree of consolidation, will be highlighted for end product usage and flow behavior of food products through several case studies. 
Key Learning Objectives:
  • How intrinsic material attributes affect a sample’s processability
  • The impact of environmental conditions, such as temperature, humidity, and consolidation on final product attributes
  • Essential tools and techniques for the characterization of food powders
Who Should Attend:
  • Anyone working in Food Research & Development, or Food Science 
  • Food Manufacturers, Quality Control/Assurance

Brought to you by:




%7B2665b270-a423-4ceb-9c93-0b0cc35124f8%7D_Speaker1_100x100Dr. Brian Rodenhausen
Particle and Materials Characterization Lead Scientist,
Anton Paar

%7B0a4fe974-bd47-4ae7-b58b-138d165ac938%7D_Speaker2_100x100Dr. Abhishek Shetty
Advanced Technical Center Lead Scientist,
Anton Paar

%7Bcdccb62d-4f94-40ad-b78d-37a1fa5cc717%7D__kellymcsweeney_croppedKelly McSweeney
Contributing Editor,
C&EN Media Group

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Tue, Jul 11, 2023 01:00 PM EDT
Tue, Jul 11, 2023 02:00 PM EDT
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Analyzing food powders is crucial for both research and manufacturing purposes to ensure product quality, consistency, and safety. Here are some essential analytical techniques commonly used for food powder characterization:


1. **Particle Size Analysis**: Determining the particle size distribution is critical for understanding the behavior of food powders during processing, storage, and consumption. Techniques like laser diffraction, sedimentation, and microscopy can be used to measure particle sizes.


2. **Morphology and Microscopy**: Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and optical microscopy allow for detailed visualization of powder particles, revealing their shape, surface characteristics, and potential agglomeration.


3. **Surface Area and Porosity**: Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) analysis measures the specific surface area of powders, which is important for assessing reactivity, moisture adsorption, and other properties.


4. **Flowability and Bulk Density**: Techniques like angle of repose, Hausner ratio, and tapped density measurements provide insights into the flow behavior and compaction properties of powders, impacting manufacturing processes.


5. **Moisture Content Analysis**: Moisture content affects product stability and shelf life. Methods like Karl Fischer titration, oven drying, or near-infrared spectroscopy can be used to determine moisture content accurately.


6. **Thermal Analysis**: Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) provide information about thermal transitions, stability, and moisture content.


7. **Rheological Properties**: Rheology measures a powder's flow behavior under different conditions, offering insights into its viscosity, yield stress, and flowability.


8. **X-ray Diffraction (XRD)**: XRD helps identify crystal structures and analyze the crystallinity of food powders, influencing properties such as solubility and texture.


9. **Spectroscopic Techniques**: Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and near-infrared spectroscopy (NIR) can provide information about chemical composition, moisture content, and other quality parameters.


10. **Color Analysis**: Color measurement tools like spectrophotometers or colorimeters assess the appearance and color consistency of powders, which is important for consumer perception.


11. **Density and Porosity**: Techniques such as gas pycnometry can provide information about density and porosity of powders, impacting packaging and formulation.


12. **Electrostatic Properties**: Powders can become electrostatically charged, affecting handling and processing. Techniques like triboelectric charging tests can evaluate these properties.


13. **Microbial Analysis**: Microbial contamination can be a concern in food powders. Microbiological testing helps ensure safety and compliance with quality standards.


14. **Chemical Composition Analysis**: Techniques like chromatography and mass spectrometry can identify and quantify various compounds present in food powders, including flavor compounds, additives, and contaminants.


15. **Sensitivity to Environmental Conditions**: Evaluating how powders respond to humidity, temperature, and other environmental factors is important for predicting stability and performance.


When selecting analytical techniques, consider the specific properties and characteristics you need to assess, as well as the equipment and expertise available. Depending on your needs, a combination of these techniques may be necessary to comprehensively characterize food powders from research and development to manufacturing.