Nestlé is using zero gravity research to develop its understanding of the foam technology used in its products.
The study could help Nestlé scientists create better air bubbles in chocolate, coffee, dairy and pet food.
Scientists at the Nestlé Research Center in Switzerland are working with the European Space Agency (ESA) on foam experiments designed to produce the ‘perfect’ bubble.
The company recently conducted zero gravity research on ‘parabolic’ flights with the European Space Agency and a team of international foam research scientists.
Before the flights, Nestlé scientists placed six 5ml samples of water and milk protein in a special machine that analyses the structure of foam, carried on board the ESA sponsored A300 airbus plane.
Flying at a maximum height of 28,000 ft (8,500m), the plane made about 30 ‘parabolas’, or up-and-down dips, creating weightlessness inside the fuselage in short bursts.
Dr Cécile Gehin-Delval, a scientist at the Nestlé Research Centre, said: “We want to make a near to ‘perfect’ bubble in order to achieve the right balance for different products in our range - not too big, not too small.
“Stable foam in chocolate mousse gives the feeling of creaminess in the mouth. To make fine coffee froth, we want to create stable little bubbles to make it light and creamy.”
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