Sedimentation is the tendency for particles in suspension to settle out of the fluid in which they are entrained and come to rest against a barrier. This is due to their motion through the fluid in response to the forces acting on them: these forces can be due to gravity, centrifugal acceleration, or electromagnetism.

In food products, sedimentation is often unwanted. Centrifugation is a typical technique used to study sedimentation. Centrifugation is used to separate mixtures of two or more phases, one of which is a continuous phase.

The driving force behind the separation is the difference in density between the phases. By using centrifugal forces the separation process is accelerated. The necessary centrifugal forces are generated by rotating the materials. The force generated depends on the speed and radius of rotation.

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