Optimal Valves for Beverage Processing

by , | May 14, 2021 | Fluid Control & Pneumatics, Food & Beverage | 1 comment

Highly controlled heating and cooling is critical in many beverage production operations. For example, fermentation processes often must be controlled in a narrow temperature range for optimum quality. Temperature control is important in pasteurization, sterilization, cooking, fermentation, and other beverage applications.

Fermentation Winery LayoutIn a ProFood World article, How to Select the Optimal Valve for Beverage Processing, Emerson’s Amit Patel explains how proper valve selection plays a critical role in effective temperature control.

Amit opens noting that:

“Too often, valves experience short service lives and other performance issues that can cause temperature fluctuations—compromising beverage quality and costing you precious time and money.”

One challenge for beverage makers is often limited space.

As a result, tank systems need to be positioned as close as possible to each other to maximize floor space and remain accessible during maintenance—making innovative yet costly tank designs a necessity.

He highlights other challenges:

  • The high cost of energy. Energy is one of the largest overhead costs in the food and beverage industry. Because fermentation is considered a wet environment, beverage makers also need to have additional electrical safety features in place.
  • Lengthy piping processes. Depending on the size and number of tanks, the labor required for piping and wiring can be costly and very time-consuming. In addition, maintenance and upkeep become all the more complex—extending potential downtime.
  • Potentially unreliable yields. For wineries, in particular, any issues that compromise batches during extended fermentation periods equate to several years’ worth of lost time, materials and cost.

Proper valve selection:

…can address the challenges associated with installing, maintaining and upgrading heating and cooling systems, saving equipment space, conserving energy and optimizing productivity…

Amit recommends for the commonly used two-way, high-flow solenoid valves, to look for ones with low electrical consumption, mountable in any position, and have an ingress protection IP65 rating for use in wet applications.

Next-Generation solenoid valves:

…include several electrical enhancements, achieving even greater energy savings and longer service life. Look for valves that incorporate power management circuits, as well as electrical surge suppression to both the solenoid and electronic controls.

Read the article as Amit shares guidance on other types of valves including angle body and six-port, as well as technologies like the G3 Electronics Fieldbus (Ethernet, PROFIBUS, DeviceNet, others) platform for automatic temperature control.

Visit the ASCO Fluid Automation Solutions section on Emerson.com for more on ways to select the right valves to maximize efficiencies, optimize applications and improve safe operations.

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The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of the authors. Content published here is not read or approved by Emerson before it is posted and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Emerson.

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