3D Characterization of Sponge Cake as Affected by Freezing Conditions Using Synchrotron X-ray Microtomography at Negative Temperature

Zennoune, Amira ; Latil, Pierre ; Ndoye, Fatou-Toutie ; Flin, Frederic ; Perrin, Jonathan ; Geindreau, Christian ; Benkhelifa, Hayat

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<p align=justify>In this study, the microstructural evolution of a non-reactive porous model food (sponge cake) during freezing was investigated. Sponge cake samples were frozen at two different rates: slow freezing (0.3 °C min−1) and fast freezing (17.2 °C min−1). Synchrotron X-ray microtomography (µ-CT) and cryo-scanning electron microscopy (Cryo-SEM) were used to visualize and analyze the microstructure features. The samples were scanned before and after freezing using a specific thermostated cell (CellStat) combined with the synchrotron beamline. Cryo-SEM and 3D µ-CT image visualization allowed a qualitative analysis of the ice formation and location in the porous structure. An image analysis method based on grey level was used to segment the three phases of the frozen samples: air, ice and starch. Volume fractions of each phase, ice local thickness and shape characterization were determined and discussed according to the freezing rates.</p>
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