Tensile properties of pumpkin peel and flesh tissue and review of current testing methods
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Abstract. In South and Southeast Asia, postharvest loss causes material waste of up to 66% in fruits and vegetables, 30% in oilseeds and pulses, and 49% in roots and tubers. The efficiency of postharvest equipment directly affects industrial-scale food production. To enhance current processing methods and devices, it is essential to analyze the responses of food materials under loading operations. Food materials undergo different types of mechanical loading during postharvest and processing stages. Therefore, it is important to determine the properties of these materials under different types of loads, such as tensile, compression, and indentation. This study presents a comprehensive analysis of the available literature on the tensile properties of different food samples. The aim of this review was to categorize the available methods of tensile testing for agricultural crops and food materials to investigate an appropriate sample size and tensile test method. The results were then applied to perform tensile tests on pumpkin flesh and peel samples, in particular on arc-sided samples at a constant loading rate of 20 mm min-1. The results showed the maximum tensile stress of pumpkin flesh and peel samples to be 0.535 and 1.45 MPa, respectively. The elastic modulus of the flesh and peel samples was 6.82 and 25.2 MPa, respectively, while the failure modulus values were 14.51 and 30.88 MPa, respectively. The results of the tensile tests were also used to develop a finite element model of mechanical peeling of tough-skinned vegetables. However, to study the effects of deformation rate, moisture content, and texture of the tissue on the tensile responses of food materials, more investigation needs to be done in the future.
Transactions of the ASABE
© 2013 American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE). The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.