Thermal Processing Software

WinCalc 2000 is a very powerful collection of tools used to perform a number of tasks relating to the establishment and evaluation of thermal processes. This includes,  thermal processing data evaluation, process table generator, and sophisticated database manager programs.  The software was written by Mr. Richard Fairbrother who retired from American National Can Company in 1991.

Before we take time to describe what the software can do for you, we should talk about the environment that the software was designed to run.  WinCalc runs in the PC based Microsoft Windows environment.  As such, it requires at least a 486 processor with at least 4 meg of ram and about 8 meg of available hard disk space and Windows version 3.1 or greater.  Since the software runs in Windows it is very easy to exchange data between it and other Windows based programs, such as, Word for Windows and Excel for Windows.

Time Temperature Data EvaluationThe WinCalc software is modular in nature.  The first one that is described is the HEAT PENETRATION AND TEMPERATURE DISTRIBUTION data evaluation module.  There are various sources of data input for this module.  Input may be either from a file created  from a data logger or from an ASCII file.  Since each data logger output is different, a unique software routine may be required for any particular data logger.  The data logger specific software routine is necessary to prepare the data for the data structure  that is used in these programs.  An ASCII file may be created by various methods, i.e.,, word processor, spreadsheet, or line editor programs.
The routines for analysis of heat penetration and temperature distribution tests use information stored in data files.  The files contain a header section that identifies the test and a section containing the time-temperature data.  A file is specific to the type of test.  For example, heat penetration test analysis programs cannot read temperature distribution test data files.  Heat penetration test data files have the extension “.HP”.  Temperature distribution data files have the extension “.TD”.  The opening menu allows the user to locate a file or specify the file type.  With the type identified, you may create a new file, modify an existing file, or print an existing file.

Heating factor establishmentHeating factors may be established by mathematical analysis or by a graphic analysis similar to the traditional ruler and pencil method.  When heating follows theory fairly well the mathematical analysis works well and is very fast.  The plotting method is superior when product heating is erratic.  With either method a  process time required to achieve a standard sterilizing value is calculated and the slow heating thermocouple identified. In this module the user may also evaluate the data with the General Method.  All text output is printed to the screen and can be printed to a printer, or to a file.
After the curves are drawn, this module also allows for printing the curves.  The curves are printed to the screen and an option for printing to a printer is available.  The curves can also be copied to the Clipboard and imported into a Word for Windows document.  Now all data involved in a heat penetration test can be saved to a electronic file.  This makes data retrieval very easy, especially compared to a paper filing system. This system makes it easy to evaluate all thermocouples.
Calculate Heating FactorsThis procedure uses a modified least squares curve fitting method to derive heating factors from time-temperature data.  Establishing heating factors from time-temperature data normally begins by running this program.  The use of program Plot Heating Factors is optional.

The file to process is selected from a list of “.HP” files currently stored in the C:\PROCESS\THERMAL directory.  File selection is followed by an  opportunity to adjust the standard conditions to be used for calculating process time and request that j be corrected.  The mathematical analysis will calculate heating factors for all curves.  The graphic procedure allows selection of the thermocouples to be plotted.  The results of the calculations are printed on the screen.  The formatted printout may be redirected to the printer or to a text file.

All thermocouples in a heat penetration test are evaluated by Ball’s Formula.  The user may select the computer to draw the curves or the user may draw the curve.  All thermocouples are then evaluated against a standard I.T., R.T., and Fo.

Plot Heating FactorsThis procedure displays the time-temperature data on an inverted semi-log plot.  The user draws a line by moving the cursor to a starting point and pressing the left mouse button.  As long as the button is depressed, a line will be drawn from the starting point to the current cursor location.  In effect, this is the ruler and pencil way to establishing heating factors.  Plot Heating Factors allows selection of the curves to be plotted.
Heating Factor ReportThe report has two tables.  The top table has the header information the body includes thermocouple number and heating factors.  The j value is not corrected.  The column labeled low heat is contains the lowest temperature used in the heating factor curve fitting.  Values for cooling factors are blank unless the source file contained cooling data.  HIGH COOL and LOW COOL give the range of temperatures used in establishing cooling factors.  The lower table gives the thermocouple number, thermocouple location, heating factors with the j-value corrected if requested.  The lower table also calculates BB for a given initial temperature, retort temperature and sterilizing value.  A sample heating factor calculation report follows.

 

Heating Factor Report

The report has two tables.  The top table has the header information the body includes thermocouple number and heating factors.  The j value is not corrected.  The column labeled low heat is contains the lowest temperature used in the heating factor curve fitting.  Values for cooling factors are blank unless the source file contained cooling data.  HIGH COOL and LOW COOL give the range of temperatures used in establishing cooling factors.  The lower table gives the thermocouple number, thermocouple location, heating factors with the j-value corrected if requested.  The lower table also calculates BB for a given initial temperature, retort temperature and sterilizing value.  A sample heating factor calculation report follows.

 

09/10/94 

THERMAL PROCESS TECH    

300X407 Sample Food                           

SAMPLE DATA                         

 

NO.   NO.  RETORT  COOL   PROCESS  COME   FILE

TEMPS TC’S   TEMP   TEMP    TIME     UP    NAME

  27   15   247.5  0.0     26.0    2.0     J94_0000.HP

 

                                        LOW                 HIGH  LOW 

TC    j      f      f       x     g     HEAT     j     f    COOL  COOL

              h      2       bh    bh             c     c

 

  1  0.55   8.2   27.8    10.1    4.9   216.9

  3  0.61   7.5   29.7     9.2    5.7   217.0

  4  0.58   7.5   30.5     9.2    5.3   219.4

  5  0.61   7.6   28.9     9.0    6.0   217.7

  6  0.57   7.9   31.3     9.8    5.1   216.9

  7  0.55   8.2   31.5     9.8    5.3   217.3

  8  0.47   8.1   28.7     9.2    5.5   228.3

  9  0.41   8.0   33.5     9.4    4.4   230.9

10  0.38   8.1   29.0     9.2    4.5   231.7

11  0.44   7.7   28.6     8.6    5.4   231.1

12  0.45   7.4   22.9     8.8    4.7   231.6

13  0.42   7.9   26.9     8.7    5.3   231.2

 

Can size correction factor for j= 1 

PROCESS CALCULATION BASED ON m+g= 180 

 

THERMOCOUPLE

NO LOCATION   j      f      f      x      IT   RT    F         B 

                      h      2      bh                o         B

1 3/4”AB     0.55   8.2   27.8   10.1     90  245   8.0     28.41

3 3/4”AB     0.61   7.5   29.7    9.2     90  245   8.0     28.75

4 3/4”AB     0.58   7.5   30.5    9.2     90  245   8.0     28.47

5 3/4”AB     0.61   7.6   28.9    9.0     90  245   8.0     29.17

6 3/4”AB     0.57   7.9   31.3    9.8     90  245   8.0     28.68

7 3/4”AB     0.55   8.2   31.5    9.8     90  245   8.0     29.14

8 3/4”AB     0.47   8.1   28.7    9.2     90  245   8.0     28.10

9 3/4”AB     0.41   8.0   33.5    9.4     90  245   8.0     27.12

10 3/4”AB     0.38   8.1   29.0    9.2     90  245   8.0     26.63

11 3/4”AB     0.44   7.7   28.6    8.6     90  245   8.0     27.43

12 3/4”AB     0.45   7.4   22.9    8.8     90  245   8.0     26.11

13 3/4”AB     0.42   7.9   26.9    8.7     90  245   8.0     27.20

 

Number  5 is the slowest heating of 12 containers with BB= 29.17

j= 0.61 fh= 7.6  f2=28.9  xbh=9.0

Article

Graphic temperature distribution evaluation

The file to processed is selected from a list of “.TD” files  currently stored in the C:\PROCESS\THERMAL directory.  Two types of graphic evaluation of temperature distribution data are available.  The first produces a linear plot of all thermocouples on a single grid.  An expanded temperature scale is used so deviations of 1F are readily apparent.  The second type of graphic evaluation plots the difference between each thermocouple and the reference from steam up to the end of the test.  Each page of printout contains 5 thermocouples.  The plots may be printed on the printer or printed to the Clipboard.  An example of the plot showing all thermocouples follows.

 

 

 

 

Data Base Managers

Another available module is a data base manager that keeps track of both heat penetration studies and temperature distribution studies.

 

Temperature distribution data base

The Microsoft ACCESS© data base contains summaries of suggested venting schedules.  The data base is backed by a hard copy file containing all of the time-temperature data and supporting documentation used to justify the suggestion.

 

There is provision to search and print test summaries.  Lists of summaries identified by serial number may be prepared.  Summaries of new schedules may be added to the data base.  Existing entries may be revised.  All results are printed on the screen.  The formatted printout may be redirected to the printer or to a text file.

 

Heating Factor Data Base

The Microsoft ACCESS© data base contains summaries of heat penetration studies.  Each record contains 28 fields of information about the study.  The data base is backed by a hard copy file containing additional test details and the time-temperature heating data.  The unique record identifier is the serial number.  Through the serial number the program moduleBALL and DEVIATION programs can extract information from the data base.

 

While searching paper files can be a very time consuming process.  Searching the electronic data base files is simple withWinCalc.  Data base searches may be based upon product, customer, container size, container type, and heating factors (j and fh

 

Search Report. 

A successful search will result in printing summaries of the tests located. A typical summary follows.

 

Serial number 0005                                       Date 1/19/95

Customer NEW SEAFOOD COMPANY

Product CREAM OF CRAB CHOWDER                       pH

Container size 211X400       Container type 3‑PIECE Process Type STILL

Total number of containers tested 20  Number of test runs 2

Container position VERTICAL              Was this a reprocess NO

Was there a cold spot study NO Location of cold spot GC

j 1.53         fh 45.8          f2 0.0          xbh 0.0         gbh 

Fill              Drnd wt.         D/N        Hdsp           Speed

Critical Factors:

CONDENSED CHOWDER PRODUCT FORMULATION #12-A. HEAT PENETRATION TESTS CONDUCTED WITH 10% MORE ADDED STARCH.

Test by C. O. BALL           Location CUST

 

Calculate Processes Calculation Report  

An option to calculate processes based upon the search results appears on the report form menu after  a successful search is completed. It affords an opportunity to calculate a standard process time using heating factors located by the search.  A calculation report is shown below.

 

                   PROCESSES FOR RESULTS OF LAST SEARCH

Folder:         CHOWDER

Product:        CREAM

 

                       

IT= 120    RT= 250    Fo= 6       m+g= 180

 

fh converted to 300X407            3-PIECE  Conduction heating.

 

Serial   j      fh     f2    xbh    gbh     BB    Fill (oz)    Drnd   D/N  Serial

  No                                              unless other  oz.         No

                                                  units given

                         211X304           

0082   1.65   44.7 ORIGINAL fh=35.5       65.18                           0082

   No. 0082  BB=65.18 IS THE SLOWEST HEATING.

 

                         211X400           

0041   2.17   43.3 ORIGINAL fh=34.4       68.71                           0041

0052   2.06   47.2 ORIGINAL fh=37.5       72.62                           0052

0053   0.35   34.0 ORIGINAL fh=27.0       29.65                           0053

0054   1.82   47.7 ORIGINAL fh=37.9       70.68                           0054

0055    COULD NOT CONVERT                                                 0055

0071   1.78   54.4 ORIGINAL fh=43.2       78.08                           0071

0072   2.23   44.7 ORIGINAL fh=35.5       71.03                           0072

0084   1.33   27.7 ORIGINAL fh=22.0       42.26                           0084

0123   2.19   25.2 ORIGINAL fh=20.0       44.86                           0123

0124   3.33   13.1 ORIGINAL fh=10.4       29.92                           0124

0125   1.51   36.6 ORIGINAL fh=29.1       54.25                           0125

0226    COULD NOT CONVERT                                                 0226

0229   1.33   27.7 ORIGINAL fh=22.0       42.26                           0229

0235   1.95   50.1 ORIGINAL fh=39.8       75.04                           0235

0256   1.86   48.6 ORIGINAL fh=38.6       72.21                           0256

0277   2.06   52.1 ORIGINAL fh=41.4       78.70                           0277

0279   1.53   57.7 ORIGINAL fh=45.8       78.12                           0279

0503   2.21   48.1 ORIGINAL fh=38.2       75.21                           0503

0511   1.88   45.2 ORIGINAL fh=35.9       68.32                           0511

0512   2.15   47.5 ORIGINAL fh=37.7       73.88                           0512

0513   1.71   47.2 ORIGINAL fh=37.5       68.81                           0513

0696   2.11   54.0 ORIGINAL fh=42.9       81.61                           0696

   No. 0696  BB=81.61 IS THE SLOWEST HEATING.

   No. 0053  BB=29.65 IS THE MOST RAPID HEATING.

   Average heating  63.81   Std. Dev. 16.73

 

As shown above, the search for the slowest heating product converted to a specific container size is greatly simplified.

 

Ball Formula Calculations

The Ball formula method for calculating either process times or sterilizing values is another module.  Before making the calculations it is necessary to create a data file.  The files are stored in the C:\PROCESS\BALL directory.  Files containing the information required to calculate process time have a “.BB” extension.  Files that serve as a data source for sterilizing value calculations have an “.FO” extension.  The program has provision to create and edit the data source files, calculate process time, calculate sterilizing value, convert fh to a new can size, and make size conversion of fill weight.

 

Files used for process time calculation have a header record containing the report title and the customer name.  Each following records contain the product name, the heating factor source( serial number and description), up to five can sizes with associated fill and drained weights, the D/N ratio, heating factors, z-value, reference temperature, aim sterilizing value, initial temperature range and retort temperature range.  Hundreds of products, can sizes, fill weights, initial temperatures, retort temperature combinations and sterilizing values are possible in a single file.  Hundreds of files are possible.  The limiting constraint is the available hard disk space.   After the data is in the file the user does not have to go to paper files to try to determine where the heating factors came from or what heating factors were used to generate a process.  This module also calculates the fhconversion and fill-in weight conversion.  This module will save literally hundreds of hours of searching through paper files.

 

Files used for sterilizing value calculation have a header record containing the report title and the customer name.  Each following records contain the product name, the heating factor source( serial number and description), can size with associated fill and drained weights, the D/N ratio, heating factors, z-value, reference temperature, commercial sterilizing value, minimum sterilizing value, up to three initial temperatures, retort temperatures and come up times.

 

Process time

Once a file has been selected from the list of available files, the user can select from various options that control what is included in the report and how the report is formatted.

 

Process Time Calculation Reports 

Sample report 1 was printed with the default options.

 

11-02-1994                                                            Page 1 

 

PROCESS SUGGESTIONS FOR AMERICANA GOOD FOODS, SOMEWHERE, USA                        

       BY THERMAL PROCESS TECHNOLOGY, INC., NAPERVILLE, IL                        

 

                   MAX    MAX       MAX                                         

                  SOLID DRAINED DRAINED/NET RETORT INITIAL PROCESS  STERILIZING

   CAN SIZE        FILL WEIGHT   WT RATIO    TEMP   TEMP    TIME       VALUE

                    oz.   oz.                 ºF     ºF    Minutes      Fo 

CHILI WITH BEANS                                                                

211X300                                      240     80      85       6.1

                                             240    100      83       6.1

                                             240    120      80       6.1

                                             240    140      77       6.1

 

BEEF STEW                                                                       

211X300                                      240     80      85       6.1

                                             240    100      83       6.1

                                             240    120      80       6.1

                                             240    140      77       6.1

 

The following gives an example of the heating factor source summary for the previous process table.  Note that the heating factors used to generate the table are listed and the summary data is followed by the data base entries that show the heat penetration test summaries.

 

Heating Factor Source Summary

11-02-1994                                                      Page  2 

PROCESS SUGGESTIONS FOR AMERICANA GOOD FOODS, SOMEWHERE, USA                        

       BY THERMAL PROCESS TECHNOLOGY, INC., NAPERVILLE, IL                            

   CAN SIZE       FILL DRND  D/N   j     fh     f2  xbh   gbh    F/CCT  z  m+g Ref  

 

CHILI WITH BEANS                                                                

0001 CHILI (CHILI WITH BEANS) 211X300 fh = 38.9

211X300                           1.59  38.9                  6.0 18.0 180 250

 

BEEF STEW                                                                       

0001 CHILI (CHILI WITH BEANS) 211X300 fh = 38.9

211X300                           1.59  38.9                  6.0 18.0 180 250

 

Heat Penetration Test Summary

11-02-1994   HEAT PENETRATION TEST SUMMARY                         Page  3 

0001  8/1/95

    AMERICANA GOOD FOODS

    CHILI (CHILI WITH BEANS)                                         pH  

    211X300    3-PIECE          Process STILL     No. cans  13 No. Tests  1 

    Position VERTICAL        Reprocess NO Cldspt stdy LIMITED TC Loc G.C.

    j=1.59        fh=38.9

Authority C.O.BALL                                 Company CUST

 

Sterilizing value

Once a file has been selected from the list of available files, the user can select from the following options that control what is included in the report and how the report is formatted.

 

11-05-1994                                                         Page  1 

PROCESS DEVIATION IN 303X406 CANS OF LIMA BEANS IN BRINE EVAL.USING 26-L DATA FOR BEANS IN BRINE                                                               

 

                               CALC     MIN   COMM                              

CAN SIZE       IT  RT CUT* BB   Fo       Fo    Fo     j    fh    f2   xbh  gbh

LIMA BEANS IN BRINE                                                             

0003 BEANS IN BRINE 303X406 Broken

303X406       132 242   0  36   8.41    4.00  7.00   1.34   4.4  22.6  5.6

 

 

* The process evaluation includes 42% of any come up time.

A calculated sterilizing value less than the commercial level will be marked **. The note “** Less than the commercial sterilizing value, but above minimum.” will be added to the printout. A calculated sterilizing value less than the minimum will be marked *****. The note “***** BELOW MINIMUM STERILIZING VALUE. POSSIBLE HEALTH HAZARD.” will be added to the printout.

 

11-05-1994                                                      Page  2 

PROCESS DEVIATION IN 303X406 CANS OF LIMA BEANS IN BRINE EVAL. USING 26-L DATA FOR BEANS IN BRINE                                                               

   CAN SIZE       FILL DRND  D/N   j     f     f    x   g    F/CCT  z  m+g Ref  

                                          h     2    bh  bh

 

LIMA BEANS IN BRINE                                                             

1943 BEANS IN BRINE 303X406 Broken

303X406           8.7             1.34   4.4  22.6 5.6  0.0   7.0 18.0 180 250

 

11-05-1994   HEAT PENETRATION TEST SUMMARY                         Page  3 

0003  11/9/49

    26-L 12TH EDITION

    BEANS IN BRINE                                                   pH  

    303X406 3-PIECE             Process STILL     No. cans  0  No. Tests  0 

    Position VERTICAL        Reprocess NO Cldspt stdy YES     TC Loc 

    j=1.34        fh=4.4        f2=22.6       xbh=5.6        gbh= 0 

 

         Fill  8.7 OZ.                                        

    Authority ANONYMOUS                               Company Cust

 

Size  Conversion 

Conversion of fh  and conversion of fill weight are the two options associated with the BALL module.  The fh conversion requires input of the old fh, the can sizes, the can constructions and the type of heating.  Fill weight conversion requires input of the old fill weight and the can sizes.  These features may be accessed from the main menu or from the data entry form.  When accessed from  the main menu, either option prints a report to the screen.  The formatted printout may be redirected to the printer or to a text file.  When accessed from the entry form, converted values may be transferred to the current entry.

 

Deviation Evaluation

Determination of sterilizing value by the Ball formula method is the most common method for evaluating process deviations.  The methods listed below offer a more accurate way to handle difficult problems.  All procedures may be set to handle multiple deviations.  All print a report to the screen.  All reports may be redirected to the printer or to a text file.

 

General Purpose Hayakawa’s Equations

This program uses Hayakawa’s equations to model a multiple retort temperature process.  Each temperature segment may have its own j and fh . The program is suitable for convection or conduction heating.  The j value must be between 0.4 and 3.0

 

Hydrostatic Cookers

This program estimates sterilizing value for cans at various locations in the steam dome of  a hydrostatic cooker during a temperature drop.  The program assumes the chain was stopped.  The program does not  estimate heating or cooling the inlet or discharge legs.  Either simple or broken heating may be evaluated.

 

Sterilmatic Cookers

This program estimates sterilizing value for cans at various locations in the cooker shell of  a Sterilmatic® cooker during a temperature drop.  An allowance for cooling is included in the estimate.  The program assumes the cooker  stopped.  Either simple or broken heating may be evaluated.

Miscellaneous Calculations

This is a collection of program tools that perform various functions relating to thermal processing.  All but Log g vs. fh/U and rho for any z-value print a report to the screen.  All reports may be redirected to the printer or to a text file.

 

Log G Vs. Fh/U And Rho For Any z-Value

All programs using the Ball formula method  determine log g fh/U or rho by table look up.  This program will build the necessary tables for any z-value.  For each z, tables with m + g = 130, 150 and 180 are calculated.  The binary tables are stored in C:\PROCESS\FHURHO where the are available to WinCalc©.

 

Free Area In Separator Sheets

Free area in separator sheets with any given hole size and a variety of spacing is calculated.

 

Lethal Rate And Fi

Given z-value and reference temperature, lethal rate and Fi are calculated for any desired temperature range and increment.

 

Can Size For Any Capacity

Given the desired net weight and specific gravity of the product, possible can sizes with total fill, 5% head space and 10% head space will be calculated.  The calculated sizes may or may not be available commercially.

 

Elapsed Time

The program give the elapsed time in minutes between two clock times.  Either a 12 or 24 hour clock may be used.

 

Analysis Of D/N And Fill Data

This program accepts Fill, net and drained weights from any number of cans. A table showing the range of weights fill/net ratio, and D/N ratio is prepared.