Fruit biomechanics based on anatomy: a review

Open access

Abstract

Fruit biomechanics is needed for quality determination, multiscale modelling and engineering design of fruit processes and equipments. However, these determined fruit biomechanics data often have obvious differences for the same fruit or tissue. In order to investigate it, the fruit biomechanics based on anatomy was reviewed in this paper. First, the anatomical characteristics of fruit biomaterials were described at the macroscopic ‘tissue’ level and microscopic ‘cellular’ level. Subsequently, the factors affecting fruit biomechanics based on anatomy and the relationships between fruit biomechanics, texture and mechanical damage were summarised according to the published literature. Fruit biomechanics is mainly affected by size, number and arrangement of cells, quantity and volume of intracellular spaces, structure, thickness, chemical composition and permeability of cell walls, and pectin degradation level and turgor pressure within cells based on microanatomy. Four test methods and partial determined results of fruit biomechanics were listed and reviewed. The determined mechanical properties data of fruit are only approximate values by using the existing four test methods, owing to the fruit biomaterials being non-homogeneous and living. Lastly, further aspects for research on fruit biomechanics were proposed for the future.

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