Measuring Heat Flux in Industrial Bakery Ovens

If you are experiencing inconsistent quality or uneven baking in your industrial bakery ovens, consider measuring the heat flux with state-of-the-art sensors and sensor arrays from Reading Thermal.

Reading Thermal, located in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania, has been researching, measuring, and understanding the commercial baking process for over 25 years. We manufacture and support the SCORPION® 2 Profiling System and Data Logger which measures and maps the key baking parameters of temperature, heat flux, air velocity, and humidity.

This powerful diagnostic tool has become an industry standard for understanding and improving your proofing, baking, cooling and freezing processes.

About Oven Heat Flux

Oven heat flux refers to the amount of energy transferred per unit area per unit time from or to a surface. It is the best non-intrusive indicator of oven performance during baking in terms of the product.

There are three different modes of heat transfer during baking – radiation, convection and conduction – and heat flux involves all three modes. Every product will have its own unique mix of these components and its own heat flux profile. There is no single optimal heat flux profile for all products.

The characteristics of specific baked goods are defined by the amount and type of heat applied to the product during the baking process. The application of excessive heat fluxes in industrial tunnel ovens can yield poor quality products in terms of color, texture, height, crust hardness, crumb moisture, and flavor.

Many bakers use oven heat flux profiles when attempting to produce the same product on two different lines or when trying to transfer product from one line to another. When the heat flux profiles match, the two lines will produce the same product.

The SCORPION® 2 Heat Flux Sensor is designed to measure convective and radiant heat fluxes at product level and display the results in Btu/hr·ft2 or W/m2. Convective and radiant heat is absorbed by the band, which serves as the conduction mechanism to the product. The sensor travels with the product through the oven under full load, producing a precise profile of heat flux components the product experienced.

Mechanically, the Heat Flux Sensor incorporates two copper spades and a bulk air temperature sensor. The black spade provides a measurement summation of convective and radiant heat fluxes, and the gold spade provides a measurement of only the convective heat flux component. The gold-plated temperature sensor provides a measurement of the free stream air temperature associated with convection.

Get in touch with Reading Thermal to learn more about measuring heat flux in industrial bakery ovens with the SCORPION® 2 Heat Flux Sensor and our other innovative oven profiling products. Contact us online, or call our headquarters in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania at (610) 678-5890 Ext. 2.