Research at the Department of Food Technology and Material Science focuses on the characterisiation, modification and functionalisation of food ingredients and food components. An important aspect is the investigation of process-induced changes in the chemcial compositon and physical structure and their impact on the functionality.
The complex interplay between composition structure and functionality is characterised in modell systems as well as in more complex heterogeneous food matrices. In this context physical structures are characterised from the submicron range to the macrscopic level and actively modified by top down definition oft he required techniques and process conditions. By using of multiple independant analytical techniques new fundamental aspects on structure-function relationships in food matrices are derived. These results contribute to more target-oriented development andf production of food ingredients and foods.
One major topic of our research is the encappsulation of food ingredients and food additives. Major reasons for the encapsulation are the protection of the encapsulated ingredient and the control of its release either during food processing or after ingestion of the food in vivo. Within the individual projects critical factors affecting the chemical stability of the encapsulate are identified and used to define the requirements for the capsule matrix and the process of its preparation. As part of a defined particle engineering particular emphasis is put on the structure formation and functionality of interfacial phenomena in dispersed systems. Material science aspects are analysed using microscopic techniques, rheological methods, spectroscopic techniques and thermal analyis.