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BOC rolls out first-ever cryogenic impingement freezer to baking industry

BOC Gases : 13 September, 2001  (Company News)
BOC has developed a cryogenic impingement freezer that delivers the baking industry's highest freezing efficiency, along with significant improvements in the dehydration rate. The new cryogenic freezer was introduced to the industry this week at the International Baking Industry Exposition in Las Vegas, Nevada.
According to Michael Newman, manager of equipment development for BOC's Process Gas Solutions, Food Group, the new cryogenic freezer differs from earlier impingement freezers in two significant ways. 'Previous systems relied upon mechanical refrigeration,' he says. 'The new freezer combines high-velocity airflow with atomized liquid nitrogen to produce a continuous, consistent, uniform freezing not found in mechanical impingement freezers.'

'The system has been tested on a variety of bakery products with outstanding results,' Newman says. 'We've looked at cookie dough, pizza dough, sliced garlic toast, pastry dough, and cereal bars, and dehydration loss is routinely well below the loss rate usually found in a conventional tunnel freezer. And, because the impingement freezer runs at a much colder temperature than a mechanical freezer, you can achieve higher production rates in smaller floor space.'

Newman states that the process is best suited for products with a high surface-to-weight ratio, although he adds, 'any product that you want to initially crust-freeze is a good candidate.'

How It Works
BOC's impingement freezer produces extremely high convective heat transfer along with efficient use of cryogen to produce a continuous, consistent, uniform freezing across and along the belt from both the top and bottom surfaces.

Upon entry into the freezer, the surface of the food product is instantly crust-frozen with a liquid nitrogen spray and high velocity nitrogen gas. This process traps product moisture, resulting in higher yield.

As the product continues along the belt, it is impinged from above and below with high velocity nitrogen gas. Maximum process efficiency is achieved by moving and warming the nitrogen gas as it travels with the product flow down the length of the freezer.

The freezer's modular design allows 10-foot-long sections to be assembled to fulfill a customer's precise requirements up to a maximum of 50 feet in length.

BOC provides a single source for cryogenic and non-cryogenic gases, state-of-the-art food safety and cryogenic freezing and chilling technologies and a variety of technologies for growth and harvest, packaging, preparation and preservation, storage, transport, water recycling and disinfection, water treatment and distribution.
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