Food & Beverage

Freezing - CryoSOL

CryoSOL is a specific line of technologies, products and services developed by SOL to provide a complete answer to the specific requirements of food industry operators with regard to low-temperature cryogenic applications, and in particular to cooling and freezing.

Perishable foods have always been conserved using low temperatures: the inhibition of microbiological activity at temperatures below zero centigrade is still today a common approach to food conservation. Freezing or cryogenic cooling of food employs liquid nitrogen or carbon dioxide using the refrigeration units in the cryogenic gas liquefied at very low temperatures. Heat exchange with the product to be frozen occurs by direct contact, and the used gas employed, once it has given up its refrigeration units is freed into the atmosphere since it is a natural constituent of the air.

Freezing by means of cryogenic gases is one of the best methods for freezing foods, both because of the speed of freezing, and hence the very short working time required, and because of the limited costs this technique entails. The high concentration of frigories per unit of gas, provided at a temperature of -196°C for liquid nitrogen and -78°C for liquid carbon dioxide, permits the extremely rapid cooling (in just a few minutes) of most foods; this makes it possible to maintain the taste of the foods substantially unaltered compared with other methods of cooling such as freezing with conventional air-blast systems.

This high-speed freezing also permits the transformation of the water content of food into micro-crystals, thus limiting weight loss compared to traditional air freezing systems, and guaranteeing better product quality when the food is thawed.

CryoSOL freezing tunnels use the SOL patent optimising gas and electrical consumptions, permitting real savings (of the order of tens of percentage points) over similar freezing systems using cryogenic gases.