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Патент USA US2502135

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March 28, 1950
2 . 09. 02 Jr. 3
Filed June 17, 1947
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i'atented Mar.
~› Ewald Erickson, Watertown, Minn., assignor to
Hercules Pow?le?- Company, Wilmington, Del.,
a corporatíon of Delaware
' .Application June 17, 1947, Serial No. '755,061
2 Claims.
(c?. 34-33)
This invention relatesv in general to improve
ments in a method tor drying protein curd mate
A plurality of 'fans 25 or the like are mounted
in the dryer and adapted to force a current of
drying air through the dryer in a path indicated
In drying' proteina'ceous material such as, tor
example, ca'sein, soybean protein and the like,
by broken line 26, the air passing in turn through
drying compartments ll and exit chamber !9,
thence downward through protein preheating
chamber 22 and' ?nally upward through air out
let compartment 20 and out through stack z?,
it is conventional to pass protein curds on a mov
ing screen through a dryer and at the same time
` to force heated drying air through the machine
in such a manner that it passes counter-currently
the direction of circulatíon of the drying air be
through the compartments. Finally, the drying 10 ing generally vertical, altemately up and down,
air is passed upwardly through the screen to an
and progressively countercurrent to the direction
of passage of protein through the dryer. Means
Now in accordance with this invention, the dry
for maintaining the drying air at desired raised
ing of protein materials is improved by a method
temperatures such as, for example, steam heaters
in which the drying chamber is divided into ad 15 or the like (not shown) may, if desired, be placed
jacent compartments and passing the drying air
at various spots; there is also provided a means
substantially vertically therethrough, progres
for reheating the moisture-laden drying air such
sively conutercurrently to the protein material,
as, for example, a steam heating coil 21 in exit
reheating the exit drying air from the drying
chamber !9 and located along the path of the
chamber and circulating the reheated air in a 20 drying air prior to its place of entry into protein
downward direction under suction through the
preheating chamber 22. A suction-type air fan
incoming protein material and thence to the air
28 is positioned at the base of chamber 22 and
outlet, whereby the incoming protein material is
is adapted to pul] the drying air through chamber
quickly preheated and may be passed through the
22 and eject it into air outlet compartment 20.
- drying apparatus more quickly and in a substan 25
In operation, protein is fed onto screen ll and
the screen is caused to move steadily through the
tially thinner sheet than'has heretofore been i
iound practicable.
dryer `ll) ?at a controlled speed, whereby a layer
Having now indicated in a general waythe na
or sheet of wet protein curd is carried through
the dryer ?rst through protein preheating cham
ture and purpose ,ofvthe invention, there follows a
more detailed description of preferred embodi 30 ber 22 and subsequently through the remainder
ments thereof with reference to the accompany
of the dryer including drying ,compartments IT;
air outlet or stack.
ing drawing in which:
- simultaneously, a current of dry ,air heated some
Figure 1 is a diagrammatic side elevation of an
what above room temperature, for example, be
tween about 150“ and about 2oo° F., and pref
improved drying apparatus according to apre
ferred embodiment of this invention.
erably at di?erent, controlled temperatures in
each compartment, is passed countercurrently
through the dryer whereby in compartments ll
comprises a large drying chamber or tunnel and,
has passing therethrough a continuous protein
the moisture in the protein curd is removed and
bearing screen !I supported and'adapted to be
dried protein is obtained from the protein `outlet
propelled by rollers !2. J'I'he screen ll is adapted 40 end ?s of the dryer. After passing through com
partments Il, the exit drying air which then is
to pass into an openingíls in one end of the dryer
designated, for convenience, the protein feed end
heavily moisture-laden is reheated by the reheat- `
Il and to pass out through an opening !5 in the
ing means such as, for example, steam coil 21,
oppo'site› end of the_ dryer designated, !or con- ` and the reheated exit drying`air then is drawn
venience, the protein outletr'end li.. within the 45 downwardly through the layer of protein curd in
protein preheating chamber 22. After passing
dryer and adjacent toprotein outlet end li are a
series of drying compartments |'|`.'separated by
through screen l I in chamber 22, the air is forced
ba?les ?s, and near the protein intak?end H is " into air outlet compartme'nt 20 and out through
stack 2 I.
an exit chamber IS. › An air outlet compartment›
zo is positioned within exit' chamber ?smíä" feeds 50 several advantages are attained in the pre
.into a. stack 2! whichis adapted to carry away the
heating chamber 22. When the wet protein curd
outlet air from the dryer; ›Directly adjacent ,to
is introduced into this chamber, it is quickly
the protein intake end- ll ofthe dryer and sur
preheated by contact with the heavily moisture
rounding intake opening |3 is aprotein preheat
laden exit drying air; the high moisture content
_ ing chamber!! which is ad?ptedtoreed
exit_ 55 of this air results in an extremely highheat
content or calorie content per cubic foot of air,
` chamber I2 and into air outlet compart?nent 2I.'_-_ The drying apparatus generally designated lB
whereby the incoming protein curd is preheated
has a decidedly
lesser tendency to deteriorate
in an unusually short period of .time. This rapid
preheating of the protein curd not only means
during the drying operation.
that the time of passage' through the preheat
ing chambers can be extremely short. but also
results in the formacion. of a thin but ?rm crust
on the layer of protein curd. since the direc
tion of the ?ow of air is downward through
the screen, the layer of the protein curd is forced
into close contact with the screen at the same 10
invention can be realized within limits of hu
midity in the preheating air; thus, a lower mois
time during which the ?rm crust is being formed
on the wet curd, with the result that the pro
tein layer is subsequently ?rmly retained on the
screen and resists subsequent upward air cur
It has been found that the advantages of this
ture content falls to att'ain these advantages.
while a higher moisture content results in ex
cessive hardening of the protein surface. Sur
prisingly, the exit drying air from normal opera
tion of the dryer has this optimum moisture
The new process according to this invention is
adapted for use in the drying of all types of
materials such as, for example, casein, soybean
rents. A further advantageous result attained 15 protein, other animal and Vegetable proteins and
in the preheatíng chamber derives directly from
the like.
the fact that the downwardly-moving reheated
What I claim and desire to protect by Letters
exit drying air is drawn through the preheating
Patent is:
chamber rather than being forced through the
1. In a method of drying protein wherein a
chamber. The use of a suction-type fan for 20 soft protein curd is fed through a dryer on a
this purpose means, of course, that there is a
foraminous belt, the improvement comprising
slight suction within the preheating chamber 22
passing drying air through the dryer ve'rtically
so that there is a tendency for the outside atmos
and generally countercurrently to the direction
phere to be drawn through opening |3 rather
than a tendency for the air to be forced out
of passing protein therethrough, reheating the
heavily moisture-laden exit drying air and draw
ing the reheated air downwardly through the
through the opening as would occur if air were
forced through a chamber adjacent to an open
protein curd to form a crust thereon and at a
This improvement not only gives an in
rate to draw the curd into close and adherent
creased ef?ciency by preventing leakage of the
contact to the belt, whereby the protein curd
air but also prevents air resistance through and 30 is rendered resistant to subsequent upward cur
near opening !3 from scatteríng the incoming
rents of air.
wet protein curd.
2. In a method of drying protein wherein a
By virtue of the fact that the layer of protein
soft protein curd is fed through a dryer on a
on screen l | is packed closely against the screen
screen, the improvement comprising passing dry
and has the protective crust formed thereon, the 35 ing air through the dryer vertically and gen
protein layer according to this invention is char
erally countercurrently to the direction of pass
acterized by being strongly resistant to deforma
ing protein therethrough, reheating the heavily
tion by subsequent upward air currents and the
moisture-laden exit drying air and drawing the
formation of blow holes in the drying chambers
reheated air downwardly through the protein
with the resultant diverting of drying air through 40 curd to form a crust thereon and at a rate to
such blow holes. The tendency to form these
holes has previously been a limiting factor neces
sitating a relatively thick layer of protein curd
on the screen, thus requiring a prolonged pas
sage time of the protein through the dryer in
order to insure thorough drying. According to
the present invention, an extremely thin layer›
draw the curd into close and adherent contact
to the screen, whereby the protein curd is ren
dered resistant to subsequent upward currents
of air.
of protein curd may be placedon the screen and,
The following references are of record in the
thereiore, the passage time may be considerably
?le of this patent:
reduced; since the reduction of the passage time 50
is greater proportionally than the reduction of
the depth of the layer of protein curd, 'the net
result of the decreased layer thickness is that
the output of a dryer may be substantially in
creased in terms of amount of protein dried per 55
unit time, while at the same time the protein
is exposed to the elevated drying temperatures
for a substantially shorter time and, therefore,
Re.14,528 v
Andrews _________ __ Oct. 8, 1918
Proctor __________ __. Apr. 19, 1892
Ball _____________ __ Nov. 4, 1902
straight _________ __ Feb. 9, 1926
- Bennett __________ __ Apr. 2, 1929
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