Effect of Brining on the Drying Rate of Tilapia in a Solar Tunnel Dryer

G.M. Kituu, D. Shitanda, C.L. Kanali, and J.T. Mailutha (Kenya)


Solar, tunnel dryer, brining, fish, diffusivity, moisture content


Studies were carried out aimed at determining effect of brining on the drying rate of tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) in a solar tunnel dryer. Tilapia fish, eviscerated, and split into pieces of approximately 4cm by 3cm by 9mm was soaked into brine at varying concentrations of 0-15%, which increased in steps of 5%. The moisture content was evaluated by the oven dry method, while the inlet air temperature, plenum chamber temperature, tunnel section temperature and exit air temperatures were collected using thermocouples connected to a data logger. The moisture content of fish reduced as brine concentration increased. The drying rate constant varied between 5.83*10-2 and 8.88*10-2 /hr for brine concentrations ranging between 0 and 15%, and it decreased as the brine concentration increased. Similarly the effective diffusion coefficient varied between 5.061 *10-11 and 3.323*10-11 m2 /s as brine concentration increased, and it decreased with increase in brine concentration. Drying of fish took about 40 hours to reduce the moisture to about 15%, for brined samples and 10% for un-brined samples. The paper provides information useful in the science of analysis of solar drying systems in fish processing.

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