PROCESS CAPABILITY INDICES TO EVALUATE THERMAL PERFORMANCE OF REFRIGERATED VEHICLES
The temperature of refrigerated products along the cold chain must be kept within pre-defined limits to ensure adequate safety levels and high product quality. Since temperature largely determines the rate of microbial activity, continuous monitoring of the full cycle temperature history usually allows for the adequate control of the process along short and medium distance distribution routes. Time–Temperature Integrators (TTI) are tools to monitor temperature impacts on product quality, offering a way to detect drawbacks in the cold chain. Process Capability Indices (PCI) are then calculated on TTI data to evaluate the thermal performance of the process. In this application a refrigerated food delivery route is analysed considering non-homogeneous retailer demands and alternative delivery schemes, with the objective of evaluating the thermal capability of the process via TTI and PCI analysis.