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Microwave-based emulsion technology featured in scaleup of sucrose esters

By Tetsuo Satoh |

Construction has been completed on a 1,000-ton/yr facility to produce surfactants — mainly sucrose esters for use as additives in dairy products and beverages. The plant will be operated by TMT Co. — a joint venture (JV) established by Microwave Chemical Co. (MWCC; Suita City; www.mwcc.jp) and Taiyo Kagaku Co. (TKC; Yokkaichi City, both Japan) — and located at TKC’s Yokkaichi factory. The facility will use a microwave-based emulsification process developed by MWCC, which was established as a venture company based on the technology originally developed by Osaka University. With this technology, for which technical barriers to entry in the sucrose esters market were previously too high, it is now possible to manufacture products with higher quality and purity than before by directly heating molecules by microwave irradiation without using an organic solvent. Energy consumption is said to be cut in half compared to conventional heating. The new facility is the culmination of a 2015 strategic alliance between TKC and MWCC to enter the Southeast Asian market. TKC aims to expand beverage-related products by optimizing the production system for sucrose esters. For MWCC, which aims to make microwave technology processes widespread…
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