DRYING KINETICS OF BARU FRUITS (Dipteryx alata Vogel)
ABSTRACT This study aimed to fit different mathematical models to the experimental data on drying of baru fruits (Dipteryx alata Vogel), determine and assess the effective diffusion coefficient, as well as obtain the activation energy and thermodynamic properties for the drying process under different air temperature conditions. Baru fruits with an initial moisture content of 0.429 ± 0.044 (dry basis, db) were dried in a forced air ventilation oven under four temperature conditions (40, 60, 80, and 100 °C) until reaching a moisture content of 0.065 ± 0.018 (decimal db). These data were fitted to mathematical models frequently used to represent the drying of vegetal products. The Logarithmic model presented the best fit to describe the phenomenon. The effective diffusion coefficient increased as temperature increased, being described by the Arrhenius equation, with an activation energy of 37.64 kJ mol-1. Enthalpy and entropy decreased, while Gibbs free energy increased as drying temperature increased.