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The use of heat pump dehydrator to dry foods is a modern way to preserve food products. It is a high efficiency energy-saving technology with many benefits such as reduced operating costs, higher quality, and environmental friendliness. It also requires little maintenance and has a long life span, making it a cost-effective alternative to other drying methods such as hot air or microwave vacuum drying.

The major source of heat losses in conventional dryers is attributed to the venting of moisture-laden air (Keeye 1978; Strumillo and Adamiec 1996). Recovering this waste heat through the use of an energy efficient heat pump in a drying system can be an effective strategy to improve product quality and reduce energy consumption.

In the case of heat pump drying, the thermal energy of the dried air comes from the latent heat absorbed by the evaporator and the electric power supplied to the compressor. This thermal energy can be converted into electricity with a high conversion efficiency. The dried exhaust gas can also be used for further heating or cooling processes to achieve more energy-efficient results.

Several studies have demonstrated that the rehydration properties of heat-pump dried fruits are superior to those of other drying techniques. In addition, the aroma and sensory values of herbs can be improved with heat-pump drying (Carrington et al. 2002; Marshall and Metaxas 1998). Another important benefit is that heat pump drying can be combined with atmospheric freeze-drying to produce a porous product with similar qualities as those of vacuum freeze-dried products (Bantle et al. 2009). heat pump dehydrator

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