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Solar food drying technology

Datetime:2015-7-2 14:17:58   Hits:1252

  In daily life, more and more people recognize the importance of food quality. Freshest, most mature, most delicious, most nutritious food from our own garden or local farmers. However, because these high-quality fruits and vegetables are seasonal, you only have a few weeks or months, they visit each year.

  Eat the rest of the year you have any plans? You will depend on the growth of the industrial and transport food to strangers thousands of miles from around the world? With healthy eating, sustainable local food supply and growing interest in self-reliance, many people have discovered the benefits of solar energy, food dehydrating agent.

  Solar food drying and more curiosity or hobby - this is an ideal application for solar energy. Solar radiation passes through a wooden dehydrator box at the top of the transparent glass, then trapped box, and then drying food calories. Dehydration may also have a heat plate, indirectly heat the food, and creates a convection into the air vent at the bottom of the dryer (see image gallery). Cool, fresh air into the exhaust gas heat, circulating drier, and then discharged through the exhaust at the top. As your food drying, moisture taken away by hot air. But solar food dryers work? practical? Yes, but first, let me put this topic in the background, creating a healthy and sustainable food supply.

  Eat in season all year

  The key is to expand the agricultural food preservation throughout the year in the summer precious bounty of locally grown. If you're like me, you'll like it much more easier, requires less energy than canned.

  Generally regarded as the most convenient method for freeze preservation, freezers but requires a constant source of electricity. Your food will be power outages and mechanical failure, frostbite will limit most food shelf life of about six months.

  Drying to preserve food flavor and nutrients to maintain a high level, it is a good way, while providing a convenient, compact and easy to store your favorite supply of agricultural products. Electric food machines work fine, but the constant noise, heat and odor add them to my house, I do not care. Electric dryers also took a few weeks to the end of valuable counter space, to attract ants and other pests. Electricity running costs about a dollar a load. Convenient power not quite satisfied with the free solar drying foods.

  Electric drying fascination, I began experimenting with solar drying. With solar energy and engineering background, I quickly designed and built my first solar dehydration. I'm glad I watched the sun rapid dehydration of organic fruits and vegetables. It is even better than I had hoped the work, large quantities of food drying one to two days. I do my garden and orchard production of all remaining, leave any waste. The following year, I grew a big garden, so I can do even more food.

  The sun?

  If you want to know your position, whether solar drying may be right that I live in Eugene, Oregon, in Bangor, Maine, the equivalent latitude. We received a lot of rain, but fortunately, we have received enough sunlight in the summer and autumn harvest success doing all our crops and solar energy. If you can get some regular days of sunshine in a row, solar food drying will work for you.

  But for those times when the sun hid a backup heating system can also help. I added a 200-watt light bulb as a heating element, so that I can finish my sun any time, the weather turned cloudy.

  Good design

  Solar Food Dehydrator, in many designs, from simple to complex, from small to big. For the home gardener, a good solar dehydrated food has the following qualities:

  Drying fast food - good food machine electric line.

  It has ventilation, easy to adjust the drying temperature and air flow control allows.

  It can easily load, unload and clean up.

  It can be easily set up and put away, little or no assembly.

  This is a more compact and lightweight portability.

  Its weather resistance, and kept in case of rain dry food.

  It has rugged construction, long life outdoor operations.

  This is a pest that all vents be screened.

  Food trays durable, non-stick and food safety material

  Now that you know the basics of solar food dryer, where are you going to design? Surprisingly, you will not find a lot of useful information on the Internet. If you search, you will find that solar dryers made of cardboard and tape program. Skip these very few stick with high-quality dehydrated meet my standards. My book solar grain dryer provided some better design information, including the full program, I design and construction SunWorks dehydration.

  The easiest to build a solar food dryer is a "hot box" design, in which the food is enclosed in a box on top obviously covering protection. Shield hole should be at the bottom and sides, so warm, moist air to exit the machine.

  To increase airflow and efficiency, you must modify the simple thermal box design. Many high-performance design is based on the separation of the two functions strategy: collect solar food dryer heat and drying foods. NM dehydration method shown below illustrates this.

  My design, SunWorks, integrated into a compact configuration that uses direct heating and indirect heating solar collectors and food drying cabinet from the absorber plate (such as solar hot box machine). Even the dry air flow was optimized through natural convection ventilation

  How to use a solar dryer

  You do not need to be a whiz operate solar solar dehydration - just place it in a sunny place for south oriented and load it with food. If you will be in a day or so, you can speed up the drying, occasionally reposition the machine to track the sun as it move across the sky. A lot of food will dry in the sun a day. Wet foods, such as tomatoes or pears, will require a second day. They should be dry enough after the first day, overnight stay in dehydration.

  Always start with the food, at the peak of their freshness and maturation - simply wash, cut to the desired thickness and place in your solar dryer. I got great results, no bleach or pre-treatment. Dried food always looks and tastes great. More than anything else, I think in the supermarket, taste better, sulfites (sulfur-based preservatives) and other commercial dried food additive, it is free.

  Most people think dry food in August, when they are supplied from their gardens can not keep up. But there is a wealth of solar drying in the spring. In May or June, you can begin to capture the early season crops, such as peas, blueberries and strawberries. Then you'll be ready for your summer and fall beans, plums, peaches, apples and pumpkins harvest.

  Think about how much fun you will have with solar food dryer, you can consider the adoption of conservation and storage of agricultural products, you can expand your garden, planting more things, you want to enjoy year-round, such as tomatoes. Food dehydration solar energy is a great way to maintain a nutritious and delicious, high-quality, locally grown food supplies all year long. A good dehydration can produce outstanding results, as well as the satisfaction of saving energy and money, using the power of the sun.

  Dried food favorites

  Fruits: apples, apricots, bananas, blueberries, grapes (seedless), peaches, pears, plums and strawberries.

  Vegetables: broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, corn, green beans, onions, peas (sweet, POD), peppers, potatoes, summer tomatoes, zucchini and squash.

  Mushrooms and herbs are very good!

  Dry food and cooking

  Most dried vegetables can be quickly and easily hydration include soup or a little more than water, such as zucchini bread recipes. Cooking and pasta good supplement, you can also add moisture, vegetables soaked in water for 10 minutes to an hour.

  You can mix things dried fruit, such as hot cereal, oatmeal or oat add sweetness and nutrition. They also can be mixed seeds, nuts and grains healthy energy bars. Solar drying tomatoes taste sweet, is delicious when eaten plain, olive oil and garlic, pickled or made into tomato pesto.

  When many dried foods to eat because they are excellent. In fact, some foods can increase the drying taste. Bananas are fantastic fruit, but dry banana heaven. Roma tomatoes to eat fresh almost too bland, but when dry, it is a treat to your taste buds. Watery Asian pears are sometimes a bit disappointing, but when dry, they are the best on the planet hospitality.


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