Showing posts with label beer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beer. Show all posts

Inline Process Refractometers for Brewers

Inline Process Refractometers for Brewers

Beer brewing and branding are all about consistency. Process monitoring is thus vital. With Electron Machine inline refractometers, you'll have less waste, use less energy, spend less money, and achieve better beer. 


While some breweries still use manual sampling and lab analysis, the trend is adapting inline monitoring and automation.  Laboratory analysis is part of R&D. It reveals how different substances or methods affect qualities like flavor and fragrance. Laboratory analysis is vital in research as it provides an understanding of chemistry. However, the utility of sampling and analysis can be limited in manufacturing due to costs and delays when the lab findings indicate the issue. Slow sample timing results in possible lost production and waste. Similarly, because the sample is a snapshot of the process, it cannot provide feedback control, timely alarms, or indicate trends. 


The angle of refraction of light in the process medium determines the refractive index (RI), which the inline refractometer computes important process variables continually. Electron Machine inline process refractometers will calibrate to Brix, Gravity, Density, or Plato and withstand CIP/SIP cleaning and rinsing operations. 


Process refractometers have a quick response time which provides critical information in all stages of beer production. Examples of applications for inline refractometers that arise throughout the brewing process:


  • Grain mashing - Refractometers measure mash concentration in the output pipe water.
  • Lautering - While the spray water rinses the grains, it completes the sugar extraction process and produces clear wort. The refractometer continuously measures this concentration to determine the rinsing breakpoint, saving water and electricity.
  • Wort boiling - Refractometer installed directly on the wort boiler continuously measures wort strength / specific gravity, allowing the brewer to determine the required concentration.
  • Rousing or Swirling - Solid particles are removed from the bitter wort in a vortex. The vortex causes the leftover particles to thicken and form sludge. The solids removal uses refractometers placed before or after the vortex for a clear bitter wort for the next phase.
  • Cooldown - A heat exchanger cools the wort, recovering some of the energy needed to boil it. Refractometers are affixed to the cooler's outflow to ensure the bitter wort has the proper level of dissolved solids.
  • Fermentation - Yeast ferments wort to produce CO2 and alcohol. The specific gravity (or relative density) of the fermented liquor is determined using refractometers. The alcohol concentration directly correlates between the initial wort density and current density, so the refractometer can closely monitor fermentation. It gives brewers real-time information into the process, allowing them to predict fermentation completion.
  • Filtration and Aging - The beer is rested after fermentation to settle the used yeast. But several filtration procedures are used to refine the beer as the last chance to impact beer quality. Refractometers assist in measuring bitterness, flavor, fragrance, foam stability, clarity, alcohol, and gas percentage.
  • Filling and CIP (Clean-in-Place) - With the refractometer, you can quickly swap between items or batches and easily detect production from cleaning products. 


In summary, refractometers assist brewers in optimizing processes, decreasing waste, saving energy, and maintaining consistency, and making great beer.


Electron Machine

352-669-3101

https://electronmachine.com