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Solar Drying Technology: Potentials and Developments

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Author(s): B. K. Bala | Nipa Debnath

Journal: Journal of Fundamentals of Renewable Energy and Applications
ISSN 2090-4533

Volume: 2;
Start page: 5 pages;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: solar dryers | experimental and simulated results | drying efficiency | exergy | neural network

ABSTRACT
This paper presents developments and potentials of solar drying technologies for drying of fruits, vegetables, spices, medicinal plants, and fish. Previous efforts on solar drying and recent developments of different types of solar dryers for drying of cereal grains, fruits, vegetables, spices, medicinal plants, and fish in the rural areas of the tropics and subtropics are critically examined in terms of drying performances and product quality, and economics. Experimental performances of different types of solar dryers which have demonstrated their potentialities for drying of fruits, vegetables, spices, medicinal plants, and fish in the tropics and subtropics are addressed. Simulated performances of solar tunnel dryer were assessed for drying fruits, vegetables, spices, medicinal plants, and fish. The agreement between the simulated and experimental results was very good. Energy and exergy analyses of solar drying of jackfruit leather in a solar tunnel dryer are also presented. A multilayer neural network approach to predict the performance of the solar tunnel dryer is presented. The prediction of the performance of the dryer was found to be excellent after it was adequately trained. Finally, prospects of solar dryers for drying of fruits, vegetables, spices, medicinal plants, and fish in the tropics and subtropics are discussed.

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