4open is pleased to introduce the sixth free article in its ‘Key summaries’ series. The ‘Key summary’ offers an easy to understand description of an article published in 4open by researchers in Italy. The article describes the use and outcomes of solar air heating to dehydrate the leaf-like ‘cladodes’ of the Opuntia prickly pear cactus for increased nutritional and medical applications.

The ‘Key summaries’ article uses non-technical language to help non-experts and other interested groups understand, in this instance, how solar ventilation drying offers a faster, cleaner, and greener system for dehydrating these cladodes with significant improvements in the end product.

“The traditional method of leaving fresh cladodes out in the sun takes several days and exposes them to animals, insects, bird droppings and microbial infestation. The modern process of drying in fossil-fuel-powered tunnels, however, brings greatly increased expense and all the environmental problems linked to fossil-fuel use.”

Read the ‘Key summaries’ article – “Sun-drying system could boost nutritional and medical value of a popular Mexican food”

Read the original article: “Solar air drying for innovative Opuntia ficus-indica cladode dehydration” by Pagliaro et al.

“Key summaries” are brought to you in collaboration with SciencePOD.