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Quafety scientists design a machinery for mechanical peeling and cutting of fresh-cut melons

A research group led by Victor Rodov at the Agricultural Research Organization of Israel The Volcani Centre, has concluded the deliverable N. 4.25 regarding the development of an automatic prototype for fresh-cut melon processing.

The general aim of the work is improving efficacy and safety of fresh-cut melon and watermelon processing by substituting manual peeling and cutting operations by an automatic hands-off machine. The present study is designed to develop technology and machinery able to mechanically cut and peel melons and watermelons in order to prepare fresh-cut fruits.

Rodov says: "As part of this study we have examined several alternatives to perform the whole process, ranging from laser-cut to high-pressure water using artificial vision systems as utilized in sorting processes in the production industry. We have evaluated, analysed and developed a number of special puncturing tools: fixed, rotating, solid and perforated".

The efficacy of the technology was evaluated measuring the quality parameters of fresh-cut fruits during shelf-life. It was found that a round, disk shaped slice as a final product is achievable and maintains quality requirements for more than a week in a cooled and sealed plastic package.

The results of these trials have led to the design of the system performing peeling/cutting operations without a human hand touching the cut fruit. Rodov concludes: "At this stage the machine requires a manual feed of the raw fruit. The main parts of the machinery have been built and tested successfully".

For further info: Dr Victor Rodov, vrodov@agri.gov.il

Publication date: 2/3/2015
Author: Emanuela Fontana
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


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