Justin O'Sullivan

Doctor of Philosophy, (Food Technology)
Study Completed: 2016
College of Health


Thesis Title
Significant factors affecting the forced -air cooling process of polylined horticultural produce

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Cooling horticultural produce properly after harvest improves the length of storage time and maintains the produce quality before transporting to market. Mr O''Sullivan investigated the factors affecting the cooling process using a fan to pull refrigerated air through a pallet containing 100 poly-lined packages of kiwifruit. He developed a mathematical model to simulate the cooling process and analysed the impact of the operating point (air flowrate and pressure drop generated by the fan) and the design of the packages on the overall cooling performance measured by the cooling rate and uniformity of the produce, the power consumption of the fan and the number of pallets that could be cooled per week. His research demonstrated that the overall cooling performance could be improved by controlling the airflow distribution between the fastest and slowest cooling kiwifruit packages. An optimal operating point and alternative package design were also presented.

Professor Andrew East
Dr Richard Love
Dr Maria J. Ferrua
Professor Bart Nicolai
Dr Pieter Verboven