8 questions about the AeroScalder

Moisturized air instead of a water bath saves water and energy


Marel’s AeroScalder system is an attractive alternative to immersion scalding systems in use since the dawn of industrial processing some sixty years ago. Marel has used its knowledge in the heat treatment of poultry to devise this innovative new technology. Why should you consider installing an AeroScalder? Below, you’ll find the answers to the eight questions most frequently asked.

  1. How does it work?

AeroScalder uses humidified hot air as opposed to hot water to scald product. The system is fully enclosed and modular. When capacities increase, it can be extended. AeroScalder has separate conditioning and scalding chambers. A skid, on which suppletion tank, heat exchangers and all pumps are mounted, sits below the conditioning chamber.   

Pre-heated water is supplied from the customer’s boiler in an enclosed loop. This water is used to pre-heat process water in a second loop. Process water is heated to the required temperature in the heat exchanger. It is then pumped to spray heads in the conditioning chamber, which humidify the air in the chamber. The humidified air rises and is forced through distributors in the scalding chamber onto the back, wings and abdomen of the product. To protect the breast, humidified air is not blown directly onto this valuable part of a chicken. After passing over the product, air is then drawn back into the conditioning area, where it is filtered and made ready for re-use.

Hard, soft and medium scalding regimes are all possible with AeroScalder. The temperature to which process water is heated and at which it is kept will depend on the scalding regime chosen. Scald times and results are the same as with conventional immersion into water.

Outfeed Aeroscalder
  1. How is AeroScalder set?

AeroScalder is set from a user-friendly touch screen, making it more 'intelligent' than a conventional scalder that immerses products in a water bath. A clear settings overview on the screen ensures even inexperienced operators can easily control it.

Apart from the number of products per minute, the flock’s average weight can also be set. This flexible adaptation to flock changes is a useful addition, which means even more precise scalding.

  1. What hourly capacities can AeroScalder handle?

AeroScalder is designed for higher capacity plants, typically those handling between 6,000 and 15,000 products per hour. Thanks to its modular configuration, an AeroScalder in a 6,000 processing plant can do with the smallest AeroScalder set-up, while a 15,000 plant would need more modules.   

  1. What does it cost?

It is true that the purchasing price of an AeroScalder is higher on average than a conventional immersion scalding system. However, water and energy savings over the long life of the system are likely to be very substantial, making the payback fast and attractive.

  1. For whom is AeroScalder now of interest?

Processors around the world are beginning to realize that in our warming world the availability of water could become problematical and that its price could go up. The same goes for the prices of energy. In short, these are resources which should be respected and used responsibly. AeroScalder is therefore an eminently sustainable scalding solution, whose time has now most definitely come.

The system will be of interest principally to those processors situated in countries where water is short or product is processed halal. 

Hygiene in the primary processing stage is key for producing food according to halal standards. The AeroScalder excels in hygienic processing, making it a preferred choice for halal-certified facilities. Additionally, its much less water-consuming design is particularly attractive to processors in regions where water conservation is a priority. This combination of superior hygiene and efficient water use makes the AeroScalder an ideal solution for processors in the Middle East.

  1. How does AeroScalder save water?

In a conventional immersion scalding system, each product takes some water with it on leaving the scalder. This water goes to drain, is lost and has to be made up in the form of suppletion water. This no longer happens with AeroScalder, although product will still be wet from humidified air being blown onto a relatively cold carcass. All in all, this saves a considerable amount of water. 

After passing over the product, humidified air is drawn back into the conditioning area, filtered and re-used. This cuts water consumption still further, as less water will be needed to humidify air to the correct level.

The flexible adaptation to flock changes means even more precise scalding.

  1. How does AeroScalder save energy?

No longer does a large quantity of water have to be heated up before processing can begin, as is the case with an immersion scalding system. Besides saving energy for heating, it also means AeroScalder is ready to process much more quickly.
A product detector installed ahead of AeroScalder signals when the line is empty. If this is the case, AeroScalder temporarily stops working, cutting energy consumption still further. Once product again becomes available, AeroScalder is immediately ready to process it. This is because AeroScalder’s temperature control system reacts much more quickly.

AeroScalder is completely enclosed. Its polystyrene panels, made from a material well-known for its excellent insulating properties, cut heat loss substantially.

  1. How does AeroScalder help hygiene?

Products are no longer dragged through a bath full of hot water but scalded with the help of humidified air. The AeroScalder eliminates the need for a shared water bath that requires regular refreshing, significantly reducing the risk of cross-contamination.

Aeroscalder Cleaning

Other aspects ensuring optimum hygiene include AeroScalder’s polystyrene panels. These are easy to clean. Furthermore, the AeroScalder has no inaccessible places or hard-to-clean materials, contributing also to optimum hygiene. 

There is an integral CIP (Clean In Place) system for all pipework in the conditioning chamber and excellent access to the scalding chamber, which has to be cleaned manually at the end of each shift. The cleaner can do this work standing. 

Given that AeroScalder is totally enclosed, any smell of hot, wet feathers caused by the scalding process is much reduced. AeroScalder is also less noisy. So AeroScalder makes for a much better and hygienic environment in the plucking area.


In conclusion, AeroScalder brings Marel’s innovative thinking to a long-neglected but essential part of the primary process. Over the years there have been several attempts to come up with an alternative to immersion scalding, none of them successful. AeroScalder is now that alternative, an alternative that brings scalding firmly into the twenty-first century.

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