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DOUGH INFLATION INNOVATION

OCTOBER 2007

D/R Dough Inflation System

Stable Micro Systems has launched a new, improved version of one of its most successful food texture analysis instruments. In response to the ever-changing quality demands of the baking industry, the new Dobraszczyk-Roberts (D/R) Dough Inflation System, which quantifies the rheological properties of dough, is designed to replicate more accurately the conditions of the baking process. The improved capabilities of the new inflation system include temperature controlled testing and increased dough inflation volumes, bringing the product in line with today's sophisticated testing requirements.

The rheological properties of dough include stress, strain and viscosity. Measurements of these characteristics are important in predicting baking performance and gluten quality. For bread manufacturers, stiffness as the dough inflates (strain hardening) is a desirable attribute. This indicates that the air bubbles will be evenly spaced and will inflate to greater volumes. The D/R Dough Inflation System can help manufacturers to determine baked loaf volume and end product quality. Potential shortcomings can be identified and formulations adjusted, if necessary.

By inflating a sheet of dough in controlled conditions, the D/R Dough Inflation System analyses the deformation of the product during proofing and baking. A piston, driven by Stable Micro Systems' TA.XTplus texture analyser, displaces the air underneath the dough sheet and inflates it to bursting point. Volume, pressure and time results are recorded. These are then analysed using the company's Exponent software to provide a calculation of the dough's rheological properties.

Stable Micro Systems has responded to the increasing diversity of textural properties in new bakery products by increasing the inflation capacity of the D/R Dough Inflation System by 230 per cent. A customised temperature chamber, which enables dough inflation in temperatures of up to 60°C, has also been added. This houses samples during their pre-test equilibration period, as well as providing a controlled temperature environment for more sophisticated analysis. In addition, Stable Micro Systems has introduced the ability to test smaller sample sizes.  This will be of interest to research and wheat breeders where flour is commonly in short supply

Jo Smewing, applications manager at Stable Micro Systems, comments: "The launch of the new D/R Dough Inflation Rig demonstrates that Stable Micro Systems is continually analysing and responding to the changing needs of the baking industry. We regularly review and update our instruments to ensure that we continue to offer the highest precision in texture analysis."

Stable Micro Systems' D/R Dough inflation System is the latest addition to the company's comprehensive range of texture analysis instrumentation for the bakery industry. Other tests include the analysis of bread softness, dough stickiness and dough and gluten extensibility. The company's sophisticated instrumentation offers wide possibilities for tailor-made texture analysis solutions.

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