Hielscher Ultrasound Technology

Juice and Smoothie Homogenization using Power Ultrasonics

Juices, smoothies and beverages require reliable and efficient homogenization to provide a desirable flavour and texture as well as long-term stability. Ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers are widely used in the food and beverage industry to produce juices, drinks, purees and sauces of superior quality. As a non-thermal treatment, ultrasonic high-shear homogenization prevents vitamins and bioactive compounds from thermal degradation, whilst delivering outstanding stability and smoothness.

Ultrasonic High-Shear Homogenization of Juices, Smoothies and Beverages

Ultrasonic high-shear homogenization improves flavour, texture, nutritional profile, and smoothness.Ultrasonically improved stability – avoiding phase separation and sedimentation: Fruit and vegetable pulp is broken down into small particles achieving high stability, avoiding sedimentation and giving a smooth texture.
Ultrasonic modification of juice viscosity and texture: Fruits and vegetables such as apples, carrots, oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and tomatoes are rich in pectins. Pectins are polysaccharides that function as natural stabilizer. Ultrasonic homogenizers extract the pectins from the cell matrix and release it into the juice, thereby increasing viscosity and stability. Ultrasonic homogenizers are therefore great in making use of natural stabilizers such as pectins.
Improved phytonutrient profile by ultrasonic extraction: Ultrasonic homogenizers break cell matrices and promote the release of entrapped molecules such as vitamins, antioxidants, polyphenols and flavonoids into the juice product. The phytonutrients become thereby more bioavailable and bioaccessible when consumed.
Intensified flavour profile due to sonication: Ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers not only release pectins, but also flavour molecules, essential oils, natural sugars and phyto-nutrients. (For ultrasonically improved nutrient profile, see case study below). Ultrasonic extraction releases bioactive molecules such as flavour compounds and vitamins from the cell matrix and makes them thereby available for the consumer’s taste buds.
Intensified Colour Profile due to Sonication: Plant pigments are also contained in the plant’s cell matrix. Ultrasonic homogenizers release plant pigments such as carotenoids, chlorophyll, betalanins and anthocyanins and reduce them in particle size. The reduced pigment size scatter light better than larger particles and obtain thereby an intensified color of juice, puree or sauce.

Ultrasonic high-shear mixers are used to homogenize fruit and vegetable juices.

Ultrasonic high-shear homogenizer with glass flow cell for the treatment of juices, smoothies, purees and sauces.

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Why Ultrasonic Juice Homogenization?

  • Improved flavour profile due to extraction
  • Increased juice yield
  • Higher Micronutrient Value
  • 
Increased sweetness without additional sugar (US extracts the intracellular natural sugar and makes it thereby available for the taste buds)
  • Enhanced bioavailability of phyto-nutrients

  • Smooth texture
  • 
Enzyme inactivation 

  • Microbial stabilization
  • 
Enhanced shelf life

Ultrasonic Juice Homogenization – Manifold Benefits

Ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers are reliable and efficient for mixing beverages such as fruit juices, nectars, vegetable juices, smoothies, fruit-infused lemonades, flavoured milk drinks, protein shakes, infused drinks and more.
In juice extraction and pressing, ultrasonication can increase the yield of juice. For instance, ultrasonic treatment increased grape juice yield by up to 3.4 %, while shortening the treatment time threefold. Ultrasonication combines with enzymatic treatment also increased juice yield up to 2 % and shortened treatment time over fourfold when compared with traditional enzymatic treatment. The successive application of ultrasound and enzymatic treatment increased juice yield up to 7.3 %. Similarly, in pineapple juice ultrasonication alone increased the extraction yield by 10.8 % for juice from pineapple mash. The ultrasonic treatment also enhanced the content of sugars, total acids, phenolics, and vitamin C. (cf. Baslar et al. 2015)
Manufacturing beverages such as juices, juice-infuced lemonades and other drinks requires reliable homogenization and emulsification for stability, enhanced flavour and texture, appealing optical apprearance, and improved functionalities. For instance, ultrasonic homogenization provides exceptional stability, prevents phase separation and improves flavour and texture of juices, smoothies, as well as milk- and protein-based drinks. Furthermore ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers easily emulsify various ingredients to produce clear emulsions. A common application of ultrasonic emulsification is the preparation of cannabis-infused waters and beverages. Clear water beverages and other drinks can be ultrasonically infused with stable cannabinoids (e.g., CBD, CBG, THC). In order to obtain clear emulsions with a high bioavailability of the active compounds, the bioactive compounds must be emulsified at nano-size. Ultrasonic emulsification is the superior technique for producing nano-emulsions with clear appearance, exceptional stability, bioavailability, and functionalities. Therefore, ultrasonic nano-emulsification is widely applied in the manufacturing of pharmaceuticals and supplements (e.g. CBD tinctures etc.)
At the same time, ultrasonic homogenizers extract flavour molecules, bioactive compounds and phyto-nutrients making them more bioavaialable and bioaccessible. But ultrasonic homogenizers also dissolve sugars, syrups or sweeteners and disperse and hydrate gums, starches and other additives into long-term stable suspensions. A single Hielscher ultrasonic unit provides your juice and beverage manufacturing with the fulfilment of the various tasks of homogenization, nano-emulsification, extraction, dispersing, dissolving, hydration and blending.

Ultrasonication improves the particle size, structure and smoothness of fruit juices and nectars such as apple juice and orange juice.

The effect of sonication with the UP400S at an amplitude of 100μm on micro-structure of apple juice.
Study and picture: Ertugay & Baslar, 2014

Case Study: Improved Nutrient Profile in Sonicated Orange Juice

Ultrasonic high-shear homogenization is a non-thermal method of food preservation and processing that has the advantage of improving stabilization and inactivating microorganisms in fruit juices without causing the common undesired side-effects associated with conventional heat treatments. Guerrouj et al. (2016) investigated the effects of ultrasonication on total phenolic and flavonoid content as well as on carotenoids and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) in orange juice using a Hielscher Ultrasonics UP200S homogenizer. They found a significant increase in the total phenolic content in the sonicated orange juice samples when compared to a control (see table below). This increase was from 42.74 up to 69.45mg GAE/100 ml for an ultrasonic treatment of 30 min. These results show a significant enhancement on phenolic compounds within sonication treatment.
The results on DPPH free radical scavenging activity of orange juice are also represented in the table below. Sonicated samples showed significant increase in the percent DPPH inhibition compared to control indicating a higher level of antioxidants. The per- cent inhibition of DPPH was 37.48%, 35.70%, 34.70% and 35.21% in 1, 10, 20 and 30 min sonicated samples, respectively compared to control samples (21.67%). These findings are congruent with the results found in sonicated kasturi lime juice (Bhat et al., 2011). These results indicate that sonication treatment enhance the extractability of antioxidant compounds.
The researchers conclude that ultrasonic treatment of orange juice resulted in a general enhancement in bioactive compounds such as total phenolics, flavonoids, carotenoids, anthocyanins and ascorbic acid with significant reductions in the microbial counts.

Ultrasonically stabilized orange juice shows increased stability and no sedimentation.

Left: untreated orange juice; Right: sonicated orange juice
Ultrasonic high-shear homogenization produces stable juice without sedimentation


The orange  juiceon the left is untreated and shows clear sedimentation; the orange juice on the right is ultrasonically homogenized and has a homogeneous, stable, and smooth texture.

The orange juiceon the left is untreated and shows clear sedimentation; the orange juice on the right is ultrasonically homogenized and has a homogeneous, stable, and smooth texture.


The study shows that sonication with the Hielscher UP200S improves the nutrient profile in orange juice.

Ultrasonic improvement in total phenolics, total flavonoids, DPPH radical scavenging activity, total carotenoids, and ascorbic acid content in orange juice.
Study and table: Guerrouj et al. 2016


Ultrasonic Probes and Flow Cells for Juice Homogenization

Hielscher Ultrasonics is long-termed experiences manufacturer of high-performance ultrasonic homogenizers that are used worldwide in industrial production of fruit and vegetable juices, nectars, smoothies, protein drinks, as well as for purees and sauces. The reliable and efficient homogenization of fruits juices, beverages and food products is a demanding application that requires high-power ultrasonic probes which generate constant amplitudes and deliver sufficient shear to obtain homogeneous food and beverage products. All Hielscher ultrasonic devices are designed and manufactured to be operated for 24/7 under full load. Ultrasonic processors are available from compact 50 watts laboratory ultrasonicators to 16,000watts powerful inline ultrasonic systems. A wide variety of booster horns, sonotrodes and flow cells allow for the individual setup of an ultrasonic high-shear homogenizaer in correspondence to the raw material (e.g. fruits, vegetables, other ingredients etc.) and the desired features of the final product.
Hielscher Ultrasonics manufactures high-performance ultrasonic probes that can specifically set to deliver the full spectrum of very mild to very high amplitudes. If your homogenization application requires unusual specifications (e.g., combination with elevated pressures and/or elevated temperatures), customized ultrasonic sonotrodes are available. The robustness of Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment allows for 24/7 operation at heavy duty and in demanding environments.

Ultrasonic Juice Homogenization in Batch and Inline Mode

Hielscher ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers can be used for batch and continuous inline sonication. Depending on beverage volume and processing speed, we will recommend you the most suitable ultrasonic setup.
Feeding multiple feeding streams, which can be independently metered into the continuous ultrasonic homogenizer system, makes the inline homogenization using ultrasonic high-shear treatment highly time- and labour-efficient, convenient and capable to process industrial volumes of juices and beverages.

Ultrasonic Probes and Flow Cells for Any Volume

Hielscher Ultrasonics product range covers the full spectrum of ultrasonic processors from compact lab ultrasonicators over bench-top and pilot systems to fully-industrial ultrasonic processors with the capacity to process truckloads per hour. The full product range allows us to offer you the most suitable ultrasonic equipment for your beverage or food product, envisaged process capacity and production targets.

Precisely Controllable Amplitudes for Optimum Results

Hielscher's industrial processors of the hdT series can be comfortable and user-friendly operated via browser remote control.All Hielscher ultrasonic homogenizers are precisely controllable and thereby reliable work horses. The amplitude is one of the crucial process parameters that influence the efficiency and effectiveness of sonomechanically effects such as homogenization, emulsification, extraction, hydration, dissolving and preservation. All Hielscher Ultrasonics’ processors allow for the precise setting of the amplitude. Sonotrodes and booster horns are accessories that allow to modify the amplitude in an even wider range. Hielscher’s industrial ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers can deliver very high amplitudes and deliver the required ultrasonic intensity for demanding applications. Amplitudes of up to 200µm can be easily continuously run in 24/7 operation.
Precise amplitude settings and the permanent monitoring of the ultrasonic process parameters via smart software give you the possibility to process your juice, beverage or food product under optimized conditions. Optimal sonication for most efficient juice homogenization!
The robustness of Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment allows for 24/7 operation at heavy duty and in demanding environments. This makes Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment a reliable work tool that fulfils your food & beverage manufacturing requirements.

Highest Quality – Designed and Manufactured in Germany

As a family-owned and family-run business, Hielscher prioritizes highest quality standards for its ultrasonic processors. All ultrasonicators are designed, manufactured and thoroughly tested in our headquarter in Teltow near Berlin, Germany. Robustness and reliability of Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment make it a work horse in your production. 24/7 operation under full load and in demanding environments is a natural characteristic of Hielscher’s ultrasonic high-shear homogenizers.

The table below gives you an indication of the approximate processing capacity of our ultrasonicators:

Batch Volume Flow Rate Recommended Devices
1 to 500mL 10 to 200mL/min UP100H
10 to 2000mL 20 to 400mL/min UP200Ht, UP400St
0.1 to 20L 0.2 to 4L/min UIP2000hdT
10 to 100L 2 to 10L/min UIP4000hdT
n.a. 10 to 100L/min UIP16000
n.a. larger cluster of UIP16000

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Hielscher Ultrasonics manufactures high-performance ultrasonic homogenizers for dispersion, emulsification and cell extraction.

High-power ultrasonic homogenizers from lab to pilot and industrial scale.

Literature / References



Facts Worth Knowing

Juice, Juice from Concentrate, and Nectar

Juice is a drink made from the extraction or pressing of the natural liquid contained in fruit and vegetables. It can also refer to liquids that are flavoured with concentrate. Juice is commonly consumed as a beverage, but can be also used as an ingredient or flavouring component in foods or other beverages, as for smoothies.
Juice is differentiated into 100% juice, juice from concentrate, and nectar. 100% juice is fruit juice made from 100% from natural fruits and vegetables without added colourings, preservatives or sugars. However, fruit juice can be prepared in different ways, ie. from fresh unconcentrated juice or made from juice concentrate. For the former one, the fruits are pressed and stored or bottled direct after fruit harvest. For the latter juice variant “made from concentrate”, the pressed juice is concentrated by removing water from the freshly pressed juice under a vacuum treatment. Thereby, a syrup-like concentrate is obtained, that has reduced volume, which is favourable for transporting the juice product. After shipping the juice concentrate to its final destination, it is turned into fruit juice by adding water.
The term nectar refers to the juice from fruits that contain too much fruit acidity or fruit pulp to be consumed as 100% juice. Common examples for nectar-producing fruits are bananas, mangos, apricots, peaches or pears. The juice or, which is technically a purée, is diluted with water and might have sugar added give it a drinkable consistence and pleasant flavour. The fruit juice content in nectar varies between 25 and 99 % depending on the fruit content and manufacturer’s recipe. Whilst nectar might contain added sugars, it does not contain any colourings or preservatives.
Other beverage forms that containing juices are juice-flavoured lemonades and milks, smoothies and fortified juice products. Juices can consist in the extract from a single fruit or vegetable or be combined from two or more fruit and vegetable sources. Most popular fruit juices are made from oranges, apples, cranberries or grapes. Other popular fruit-based beverages are made from pineapple, passion fruit, grapefruit, mango, banana, cherry and kiwi.
Commercial vegetable juices are commonly made from varying combinations of carrots, beets, celery, pumpkin, and tomatoes. The latter two, although not technically vegetables, are commonly used to increase palatability. Other popular items in vegetable juices are parsley, dandelion greens, kale, celery, fennel, broccoli, and cucumbers. Lemon, garlic, ginger, tumeric and other spices are added for health benefits and to create interesting flavour profiles.