A particle based model to simulate microscale morphological changes of plant tissues during drying

Karunasena, H. C. P. and Senadeera, W. and Brown, R. J. and Gu, Y. T. (2014) A particle based model to simulate microscale morphological changes of plant tissues during drying. Soft Matter, 10 (29). pp. 5249-5268. ISSN 1744-683X

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Fundamental understanding on microscopic physical changes of plant materials is vital to optimize product quality and processing techniques, particularly in food engineering. Although grid-based numerical modelling can assist in this regard, it becomes quite challenging to overcome the inherited complexities of these biological materials especially when such materials undergo critical processing conditions such as drying, where the cellular structure undergoes extreme deformations. In this context, a meshfree particle based model was developed which is fundamentally capable of handling extreme deformations of plant tissues during drying. The model is built by coupling a particle based meshfree technique: Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) and a Discrete Element Method (DEM). Plant cells were initiated as hexagons and aggregated to form a tissue which also accounts for the characteristics of the middle lamella. In each cell, SPH was used to model cell protoplasm and DEM was used to model the cell wall. Drying was incorporated by varying the moisture content, the turgor pressure, and cell wall contraction effects. Compared to the state of the art grid-based microscale plant tissue drying models, the proposed model can be used to simulate tissues under excessive moisture content reductions incorporating cell wall wrinkling. Also, compared to the state of the art SPH–DEM tissue models, the proposed model better replicates real tissues and the cell–cell interactions used ensure efficient computations. Model predictions showed good agreement both qualitatively and quantitatively with experimental findings on dried plant tissues. The proposed modelling approach is fundamentally flexible to study different cellular structures for their microscale morphological changes at dehydration.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported Licence.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2017 04:40
Last Modified: 20 Feb 2017 04:12
Uncontrolled Keywords: morphology, microscale, SPH, drying
Fields of Research : 09 Engineering > 0908 Food Sciences > 090802 Food Engineering
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970109 Expanding Knowledge in Engineering
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1039/c4sm00526k
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/30539

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