Non-Invasive Rheo-MRI Study of Egg Yolk-Stabilized Emulsions : Yield Stress Decay and Protein Release

Serial, Maria R.; Arnaudov, Luben N.; Stoyanov, Simeon; Dijksman, Joshua A.; Terenzi, Camilla; Duynhoven, John P.M. van


A comprehensive understanding of the time-dependent flow behavior of concentrated oil-in-water emulsions is of considerable industrial importance. Along with conventional rheology measurements, localized flow and structural information are key to gaining insight into the underlying mechanisms causing time variations upon constant shear. In this work, we study the time-dependent flow behavior of concentrated egg-yolk emulsions with (MEY) or without (EY) enzymatic modification and unravel the effects caused by viscous friction during shear. We observe that prolonged shear leads to irreversible and significant loss of apparent viscosity in both emulsion formulations at a mild shear rate. The latter effect is in fact related to a yield stress decay during constant shearing experiments, as indicated by the local flow curve measurements obtained by rheo-MRI. Concurrently, two-dimensional D-T2 NMR measurements revealed a decrease in the T2 NMR relaxation time of the aqueous phase, indicating the release of surface-active proteins from the droplet interface towards the continuous water phase. The combination of an increase in droplet diameter and the concomitant loss of proteins aggregates from the droplet interface leads to a slow decrease in yield stress.