LIQUID DIFFUSION DURING DRYING OF SORGHUM GRAINS UNDER DIFFERENT CONDITIONS
ABSTRACT Drying is the most widely used process to ensure the quality and stability of plant products. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the effective water diffusivity and activation energy in grain sorghum during drying at different temperatures and initial moisture contents. Sorghum grains (cultivar DeKalb 640) were harvested with an initial moisture content of 0.49 kg water kg−1 dry matter. The effective diffusion coefficient was determined from different initial moisture contents of approximately 0.49, 0.40, 0.31, and 0.23 kg water kg−1 dry matter. Grains with different moisture contents were dried under four temperature conditions of 40, 60, 80, and 100 °C on perforated trays. The spherical geometry model was used for liquid diffusion. The experiment was conducted in a completely randomized design in a 4 × 4 factorial scheme (four moisture contents × four temperatures), with three replications. Data were subjected to analysis of variance and regression using the statistical software SISVAR®. Sorghum grain diffusivity increases at the same drying temperature as an increase of the initial moisture content of grains. The activation energy was higher for grains with higher initial moisture content, with values of 27.32, 26.75, 22.55, and 20.94 kJ mol−1, respectively.