KNUST students invent fruit preservation machine

Loss of huge volumes of farm produce after harvesting remains serious challenge to many rural farmers.

Traders face similar fate because equipment to keep such foodstuff even away from farm gate is unavailable.

There is however good news as some students of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology employ nature to keep fruits and vegetables fresh.

Using a device known as Evatech Evaporative Cooler, the technology keeps fruits and vegetables fresh for more than two weeks.

The cooler works by dropping-in temperature, turning liquid into gas.

It is equipped with solar panel, to circulate water around the system.

An evaporative pad made from jute sac lowers the temperature as air passes through it.

The process is different from typical air conditioning   or refrigeration systems, which involves removal and transfer of heat from a space.

A simple example of natural evaporative cooling is perspiration sweat whose evaporation cools the body.

 A porous earthenware vessel would cool water by evaporation through its walls.

The system has a display glass, so traders can monitor condition of the stuff without touching them.

“If your tomatoes spoil in one week, your tomatoes can go for month, with our unit.”

“It is easier to operate, it uses 30 Watt of power and relatively cheap to build,” says group leader, Jeffery Boakye Appiagyei of the Department of Agricultural Engineering.

He says the unit provides ideal condition for storing even wine.

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