Poroviscoelasticity of whey protein hydrogels at different length and time scales

Wei Hu, Carlos Corbera-Sabaté, Xiao Dong Chen, Ruben Mercadé-Prieto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The mechanical and solvent transport properties of model whey protein hydrogels were characterized by mechanical indentation. Using cylindrical indenters with a large size range, 0.2–6 mm, it is confirmed that most of the force relaxation measured during indentation is poroelastic in nature, i.e. due to solvent transport. An additional, smaller, viscoelastic relaxation is observed with a relaxation time of ∼10 s. A new microindentation apparatus was built to test hydrogels using small indenters, resulting in constant solvent diffusivities and permeabilites with indenter sizes 0.2–1 mm, at roughly ∼4·10−10 m2/s and ∼5·10−18 m2 respectively, regardless of the swelling conditions considered. Relaxations, however, do not reach constant force values at very long times, increasing the uncertainty of the poroviscoelastic analysis. Despite this, the auxetic behaviour of whey protein hydrogels is highly likely, as inferred from consistent drained Poisson's ratios lower than 0.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-246
Number of pages10
JournalFood Hydrocolloids
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)

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