When processing milk and juice, the food industry uses heat exchangers throughout the process. To have no risk to the consumers, they have to be free from microbes. The INM, Leibniz Institute for New Materials recently introduced nanocoatings that can reduce the effort required for cleaning the heat exchangers, as well as their corrosion. In these new coatings, the research scientists combine anti-adhesive, anti-corrosive and, if needed, antimicrobial properties.
The developers reportedly achieved the anti-adhesive characteristics by introducing hydrophobic compounds that are similar to common Teflon. The compounds inhibit the formation of any undesired biofilm and can allow residues to be transported out more easily before they clog up the channels of the heat exchangers.
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