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New generation automated fruit juice vending machine to reduce food poisoning of the children and the working population (SAFEVEND)


The number of vending machines in Europe has grown by 20% from 9million in 1997 to an estimated 10million in 2002. They now constitute an integral feature of most work places with more than 80% of the work force drinking out of automated vending system at anyone point in the day. An estimated 120,000 man-days, are lost annually to stomach bugs caused by water borne bacteria growing in the remote parts (not easily cleaned portions) of the vending machine and dispensed through the drinks costing businesses an estimated at ?1.2bn pa. Similarly the quality of the drink is not assured because the mixing is subject to operator error in settings or malicious attempt to maximise profit by over diluting the drinks. This leads to lack of protection for the drink brand leading to loss of business. Furthermore, the estimated 10 Million machines consume a staggering 4800 Terra Watts of energy per annum at the cost of ?4328n because they operate on a thermostat-controlled compressor driven refrigeration cycle. Therefore there is a need for a new enabling technology that will allow vending machine builders to provide a new generation of vending and dispensing machines able to:
1. Ensure that the multiplication of pathogens do not occur within the machine and in particular on the nozzle and other key components;
2. Ensure product quality in terms of an on-line, real-time verified quality measurement and control;
3. Enable a significant reduction in power consumption Therefore our idea is to develop an active controlled vending machine incorporating a novel-mixing chamber that will ensure a consistently accurate quality drink is dispensed, while incorporating a sterilisation unit to prevent microbial growth.
The cooling or heating energy will be supplied be supplied by a refrigeration cycle with energy savings of up to 25% on the traditional refrigeration cycle. The proposed technology will generate a market of ?976M while creating 6500jobs...

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Cirencester road
Tetbury, gloucestershire

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