|Aneta Ocieczek||Gdynia Maritime University, Faculty of Entrepreneurship and Quality Science, Department of Commodity Science and Quality Management, Morska Street, 81-87, 81-225 Gdynia, Poland|
|Zbigniew Otremba||Gdynia Maritime University, Faculty of Marine Engineering, Department of Physics, Morska Street, 81- 87, 81-225 Gdynia, Poland|
This paper presents one of the aspects of a wide range of challenges related to space exploration. The main factor making it possible for humans to engage in space exploration is the provision of a basic element of existence, which is stable quality food. The starting point for the conducted research was the assumption that surface phenomena, involving water and determining food stability, can occur with different intensities under extra-terrestrial conditions. The results of this study describe the effect of the 10 mT static magnetic field on the process of water vapor particle adsorption and desorption on the surface of organic samples. The research material included powders with hygroscopic properties: gelatin (protein) and starch (carbohydrates). The research included a comparison of the direction, dynamics, and range of water vapor sorption in control conditions in a homogenous, static magnetic field. The research involved the use of desiccators with aqueous saturated solutions of NaOH and NaCl, and a static magnetic field generator. The obtained results indicate that magnetic field has an effect on the course of sorption on organic samples, and it can determine food stability during storage. The results of this work also indicate that there is the potential for reducing the costs of food preservation by drying it in the presence of a magnetic field; the study introduces innovative solutions in the construction of cereal silos, which is part of the concept of sustainable development.
Range and dynamics of sorption; Sorption properties of food; Space exploration; Static magnetic field
In the context of the results of many research studies (Ruiz Celma et al., 2012; Ocieczek, 2014; Mishra et al., 2016) on the durability of dehydrated foods, a question has arisen as to whether a magnetic field (Zubaidah et al., 2014) has any impact on the surface phenomena occurring in organic matter that could potentially determine its storage stability.
The phenomenon of water vapor
sorption on the surface of organic samples, e.g., food products, can occur with
various kinetics, depending on their properties as determined by their chemical
composition and physical structures, on the difference between the water
activity in the sample and the relative pressure of the surrounding air, and on
the nature of the phenomenon taking the form of adsorption or desorption (Gondek and Lewicki, 2007; Huespe et al., 2017).
Studies on the kinetics (including the direction and the dynamics) of water vapor sorption in selected food products have demonstrated that the effect of the relative moisture of the atmosphere on sorption depends on the physical and chemical properties of the product. Starch is a natural substance with a relatively high homogeneity (Judawisastra et al., 2018) and high kinetics of sorption, which is determined by a significant number of sorption centers with a balanced energy level. Sorption does not reveal the change in the mechanism in the course of sorption under the impact of water vapor in the surrounding atmosphere (Ocieczek, 2013). However, changes in the sorption mechanism of amorphous products is a concern, and they are most often related to structural changes in the components of the products, which may include swelling, the increased mobility of protein chains, or the exposure of new sorption centers. Such changes are typical of powdered gelatin, which has a partially crystalline polymer with a lower degree of order in comparison to starch granules. Gelatin is subject to structural changes under the effect of water, even swelling in contact with cold water (Park et al., 2008). As a result of the structural transformations of the component, the rate of sorption is either constantly maintained at a high level or periodically increases, since sorption includes an increasing number of active centers available for water particles. Additionally, after absorbing a certain amount of water, specific for the given substance, the amorphous components can transform into a crystalline form (Pa?acha and Sitkiewicz, 2010), which, for average values of relative humidity of the atmosphere, can only absorb and maintain small amounts of water. The change of an amorphous component into a crystalline form triggers a change in the sorption mechanism.
Previous studies have demonstrated the effects of magnetic field on various types of biological and physicochemical processes, which were particularly applied in environmental engineering, e.g., in the crystallization of calcium carbonate (Fathi et al., 2006), water treatment (Ambashta and Sillanpää, 2010), the coagulation and sedimentation of colloid particles (Higashitani, 1996), and sewage treatment (Ji et al., 2010; Zhang et al., 2011). Moreover, research findings have indicated that the magnetic field has an effect on the dynamics of some of the reactions that occur in food during its storage (K?dzierska-Matysek et al., 2018) as well as on the proper functioning of living organisms (Fey et al., 2019; Stankevi?i?t? et al., 2019; Jakubowska et al., 2019).
The only work addressing the issue of the effect of a magnetic field on the course of surface phenomena was a study by Ocieczek and Otremba (2019) on the effect of a magnetic field on the course of water desorption from the surface of starch granules. However, the effects of the magnetic field on the course of surface phenomena in a wider range of water activities have not been examined yet. Therefore, the study discussed in this paper aimed to evaluate the effect of a static magnetic field on the intensity (which involves direction, dynamics, and range) of the surface phenomena, expressed by the adsorption or desorption of water vapor by the matrix of the solid substance (organic sample). The results were used to verify the assumption concerning the existence of a significant effect of static magnetic field on the intensity of the sorption process that occurs on the surface of organic samples demonstrating hygroscopic properties. It was hypothesized that the effect of the magnetic field changes the thermodynamic status of the water particles remaining in the environment and in the organic samples under examination. Consequently, the natural phenomena related to the movement of water molecules in order to reach dynamic equilibrium with the environment, as demonstrated by maximum disorder and minimum energy, can occur with different intensities.
The results of the experiments demonstrate the effect of a static magnetic field on the kinetics and the range of water adsorption by powdered gelatin and starch. It was found that a static and homogenous 10 mT magnetic field increases the rate of water adsorption by those substances, particularly in the initial phase of this process. Additionally, due to the magnetic field, the status of dynamic equilibrium between the sample and the atmosphere is established at various levels, i.e., it is higher in the magnetic field. The effect of the field can be explained by the change in the thermodynamic state of the water particles, which leads to increased water vapor pressure, resulting in either an increase in entropy or stimulation of the substances’ ability to adsorb water, which should also be treated as a factor favoring an increase in entropy.
The water desorption of those substances is similar in the magnetic field and in the absence of that field. However, there are no grounds to claim that the magnetic field does not participate in this process. It seems more probable that the field can exert its influence through mutually competitive kinetic processes.
The results of this work provide a starting point in research that aims to create the foundations for predicting changes in food stored under conditions, such as space exploration environments, that are different from terrestrial conditions. The results of this work also indicate that the presence of a magnetic field with an induction greater than the Earth's may contribute to the change in the dynamics of the drying process and affect the state of water in dehydrated materials, which is important from the point of view of the efficiency of the drying process and food stability during storage. This, in turn, may have great importance for the implementation of the concept of sustainable development based on an energy-efficient economy (Shakouri et al., 2018).
This work was supported by the grant No. WPiT/2019/PZ/05
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193114.jpg||Figure 1 Experimental setup: desiccator with reference samples in geomagnetic field 0.05 mT (left), desiccator between Helmholtz coils generated static uniform magnetic field 10 mT (right)|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193217.jpg||Figure 2 The rate of changes in the weight of a gelatine sample by adsorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaCl solution (75%) in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193310.jpg||Figure 3 The rate of changes in the weight of a gluten-free starch sample by adsorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaCl solution (75%) in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193359.jpg||Figure 4 Changes in the weight of a gelatine sample by adsorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaCl solution (75%) in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193501.jpg||Figure 5 Changes in the weight of a gluten-free starch sample by adsorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaCl solution (75%) in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193548.jpg||Figure 6 The rate of changes to the weight of gelatine samples by desorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaOH (8.9%) solution in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193633.jpg||Figure 7 The rate of changes to the weight of gluten-free starch samples by water desorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaOH (8.9%) solution in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193716.jpg||Figure 8 Changes to the weight of gelatine samples by desorption of water vapour pressure regulated by saturated NaOH solution (8.9%) in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193753.jpg||Figure 9 Changes in the weight of gluten-free starch samples by desorption of water vapour regulated by saturated NaOH (8.9%) solution in ordinary conditions and under the effect of an artificial static magnetic field|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602193909.docx||Table 1 Statistical evaluation of the differences between average changes in the weight of samples stored in geomagnetic field 0.05 mT and in an artificial magnetic field 10 mT both in temperature and humidity controlled conditions (20°C, 75%)|
|R2-CE-3831-20200602194012.docx||Table 2 Statistical evaluation of differences between average changes in the weight of samples stored in geomagnetic field 0.05 mT and in an artificial magnetic field 10 mT both in temperature and humidity controlled conditions (20°C, 8.9%)|
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