Application of Interferometric Techniques for Quality Control of Oils Used in the Food Industry
The purpose of this project is to propose a quick and
environmentally friendly alternative to measure the quality of oils
used in food industry. There is evidence that repeated and
indiscriminate use of oils in food processing cause physicochemical
changes with formation of potentially toxic compounds that can
affect the health of consumers and cause organoleptic changes. In
order to assess the quality of oils, non-destructive optical techniques
such as Interferometry offer a rapid alternative to the use of reagents,
using only the interaction of light on the oil. Through this project, we
used interferograms of samples of oil placed under different heating
conditions to establish the changes in their quality. These
interferograms were obtained by means of a Mach-Zehnder
Interferometer using a beam of light from a HeNe laser of 10mW at
632.8nm. Each interferogram was captured, analyzed and measured
full width at half-maximum (FWHM) using the software from
Amcap and ImageJ. The total of FWHMs was organized in three
groups. It was observed that the average obtained from each of the
FWHMs of group A shows a behavior that is almost linear, therefore
it is probable that the exposure time is not relevant when the oil is
kept under constant temperature. Group B exhibits a slight
exponential model when temperature raises between 373 K and 393
K. Results of the t-Student show a probability of 95% (0.05) of the
existence of variation in the molecular composition of both samples.
Furthermore, we found a correlation between the Iodine Indexes
(Physicochemical Analysis) and the Interferograms (Optical
Analysis) of group C. Based on these results, this project highlights
the importance of the quality of the oils used in food industry and
shows how Interferometry can be a useful tool for this purpose.
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