I think what we all need before slowing emerging from COVID-19 Coronavirus lockdowns across the globe is a good story about improving brewing perfomance.
In a Craft Brewing Business article, Precisely control CO2 in the brewing process with high-efficiency automation solutions, from valves to regulators, Emerson’s Naresh Kumar shares the story of a Canadian brewery and a project to improve operational performance.
Naresh opens describing the importance of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the beer-making process.
Initially, it is produced during fermentation when it’s usually vented as a byproduct. Later in the process, brewers use the gas to purge bottles as well as force-carbonate beer during bottling to preserve its flavor.
Quality is affected with too much or too little CO2. The brewery staff was trying to control the levels through manual adjustments of the cylinders of CO2.
For example, the brewery’s team could not accurately determine when a cylinder was empty, so it had to estimate when to switchover to fresh tanks. Changing them out too soon resulted in wasted CO2. Changing them too late could harm the batch with under-carbonation.
From a safety standpoint, the cylinders needed to be moved frequently.
Employees had to physically move tanks, each weighing about 100 lbs, to switch them three to four times a week.
…a gas distribution system manifold that offered more efficiency and control than the manual system.
This CO2 distribution system included a:
…TESCOM SG3 Series Single-stage Regulator, which is suitable for high-purity applications.
…the ASCO 291 Compressed Natural Gas Valve. The value is specifically designed for compressed natural gas applications that require the ability to handle pressure over 5,000 psi. Its wide pressure range makes it well-suited for a brewery application.
These devices, the regulator and valve, were connected with the brewing control system.
The control system maximizes CO2 use while eliminating the downtime that came with manual switchovers. When cylinder pressure drops to a predetermined level, the automated system closes the valve on the empty side and opens the valve on the other side.
Read the article for more as Naresh describes the performance improvements in staff utilization, CO2 usage and inventory reductions, and additional data to analyze and make continuous improvements to the beer.
Visit the Brewing page in the Food & Beverage industry solutions section on Emerson.com for more ways to drive business performance improvements. You can also connect and interact with other air flow control and industry experts in the Fluid Control & Pneumatics and Food and Beverage groups in the Emerson Exchange 365 community.