Extrusion foaming of starch based materials: From starch to foams - Rheology of starch based compounds - Die design for foaming - Variety of shapes with different performance - Packaging of heavy products

M. Hilhorst, H.J. de Beukelaer, S.S.M. Chu, F. Alvarado , C. Esposito, Daniele Tammaro, T.H.J. van Polen, Jan Wietze Huisman

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterAcademic

Abstract

Starch foams have been used since decades by industry, mainly in the food industry where it has been utilized as a method for making puffed snacks of a variety of brand types. The application of starch in packaging products is limited to loose fill and thin products, mainly produced by discontinuous processes. Starch foams as a bio-based, and biodegradable product could be promising alternative to fossil-based foams. However, smart design, low-cost, high-performing starch foams are needed. Dimensional accuracy of the final foamed product, obtained through a die, is one of the biggest challenges for the engineering of a stable foam extrusion process. Modelling of formulations based on known rheological data can lead to products with pre-designed shapes. In the current work, in-line rheology data is combined with Computational Fluids Dynamics (CFD) to tackle die design and reduce the trial-and-error process. Herein, we present the viscosity results of the in-line measurements, the modelling of the rheological behaviour of starch-based mixtures and the results of the CFD simulations on square and rectangular geometries. We give a sneak preview of the first custom made starch based extruded foams for packaging of heavy materials. This work is a collaboration between Wageningen Food and Biobased Research and the Department of Chemical, Materials and Production Engineering, University of Naples Federico II.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventEuropean Bioplastics Conference - Berlin, Germany
Duration: 12 Dec 202313 Dec 2023

Conference

ConferenceEuropean Bioplastics Conference
Country/TerritoryGermany
CityBerlin
Period12/12/2313/12/23

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