Multidisciplinary Research in Food Science

Beth Tirio is a graduate student in Chemical Engineering working in the Department of Food Science at Penn State.  Graduate research and study embraces a multidisciplinary approach across the campus and allows all graduate students easy access to the people and technology they need to pursue their academic and scientific interests. Students in Ag Sciences as well as other programs learn to reach across institutional boundaries early here. 

Tirio is working with Greg Ziegler, professor of food science, on a spray drying project in the dry Pilot Plant located in the new Food Science Building.

Tirio is working to develop a pilot plant level spray drying process that will allow food ingredient manufacturers to consider spray drying  as a feasible alternative to ingredient manufacturing.  Before going on I should explain what spray drying is.  Think of some ingredient mixed in water inside a spray bottle.  Spray into a stream of hot air which drives off the moisture and all that's left is the solid ingredient.  Sounds simple but until Tirio started work on her project successful spray drying was creating ingredients at the microgram level.

The Pilot Plants in the new building are outstanding facilities for the application and utilization of research for real world problems.  And this is only one of two pilot plants in Food Science.


Anonymous said…
Amazing facilities. Are these in the College of Ag Sciences or an adjunct facility of Chemical Engineering?

Ian Smithe
Steve Williams said…
Ian: The Pilot Plant depicted are facilities of the College of Agricultural Sciences. Just one of many modern scientific workspaces and labs in our College.

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