Author: Mursalin, Purwiyatno Hariyadi, Eko Hari Purnomo, Nuri Andarwulan, dan Dedi Fardiaz
Coconut oil is the main source of medium chain triglycerides (MCT). Fractionation produce oil fraction containing MCT concentrate. This research aims to study the influence of various factors of cooling treatment on the crystallization and fractionation of coconut oil, and to establish effective cooling procedure to produce oil fraction with high MCT content. The research was conducted in Laboratorium of SEAFAST CENTER IPB from March 2012 to February 2013. Coconut oil was heated at 70°C then cooled at different cooling rate to reach various crystalization temperatures. The oil was then stirred at 15 rpm and allow to crystallized at different period of time (up to 900 min), and finally fractionated by vacuum filtration using Whatman #40 paper. Fractionation temperatures was the same as crystalization temperature. The results showed that there were three distinct cooling regimes critical to crystallization process, i.e temperature range from 70 to 29°C; 29°C to crystallization temperature; and crystallization temperature In the first regime, melted coconut oil might be cooled quickly to save time, but in the second regime need be done with a cooling rate of less than 0.176°C/min to produce physically stable crystal. Oil with high triacylglycerol content could be obtained from olein fraction of coconut oil At the crystallization temperature 21.30-21.73°C for the critical cooling rate between 0.013 to 0.176°C/min, the higher MCT content of olein fraction were produced by the lower critical cooling rate and the longer crystallization process.