Stirred cell membrane emulsification for multiple emulsions containing unrefined pumpkin seed oil with uniform droplet size

Stirred cell membrane emulsification was used to create double water-in-oil-in-water emulsions at the dispersed phase flux of up to 3200 L m−2 h−1. The oil phase was unrefined pumpkin seed oil or sunflower oil containing 30% by volume of internal water phase and the external water phase was 2% Tween 20 (polyoxyethylene sorbitan monolaurate) or 2% Pluronic F-68 (polyoxyethylene-polyoxypropylen copolymer). Using microengineered nickel membranes with pore sizes between 15 and 40 μm, median drop sizes of double emulsion droplets were in the range between 100 and 430 μm, depending mainly on the shear at the membrane surface and dispersed phase injection rate. In most cases the drops were very uniform, with span (i.e. 90% drop size minus 10% drop size divided by median size) values of around 0.5. This data is similar to what was obtained previously for simple O/W emulsions of the same materials. Hence, the internal water phase, and internal surfactant, 5% PGPR (polyglycerol polyricinoleate), did not adversely influence the emulsification process. A marker material, copper sulfate, was added to the internal water phase and the release of copper was monitored with respect to time. For both lipid systems, at the larger droplet size, there was a significant period of no copper release, followed by almost linear release with time. This initial period was absent when the drop size was close to 100 μm. The initial entrapment efficiency of the copper, in all experiments, was higher than 94%.