Many breweries, both small and large, use a three kettle system to brew beer as opposed to a more traditional four kettle system. One of the kettles pulls double duty and serves as both a mash and a lauter tun. The vessel needs to heat and maintain mash to a specific temperature. One degree can mean the difference between a good batch of beer and having to pour it down the drain. Typically a temperature sensor is placed on the wall of the kettle, away from the rake, to correlate what the temperature is throughout the kettle; a process that has proven to be inaccurate and causes a lot of batch-to-batch variation. This is not what a brewmaster, much less a beer connoisseur, wants to hear.
Ideally the brewmaster would place multiple temperature sensors on the mash rake itself, providing data across the entire diameter of the vessel.
As a food product, beer is subject to strict sanitation standards that are usually satisfied by a caustic Clean-In-Place (CIP) system. While this process minimizes health and contamination risks, it exposes any instrumentation inside the kettle to a harsh concentration of nitric acid that can be damaging to devices that are not engineered to withstand the conditions.
The challenges involved in a brewing process – both having a moving product and the existence of a harsh cleaning environment – present brewers with the problem of maintaining a consistent product for the end user, you and me.
Matrix Product Development and the Wyze Temp team have worked closely with the Controls group of a growing microbrewery to modify our standard Wyze Temp PLUS wireless temperature probes with a suitable chemically inert, IP69K enclosure, as well as providing an extra-long, sturdy stainless steel probe that attaches to the mash rake.
In addition to an Ethernet interface our Wyze Temp Base has a 4-20mA output, providing an average of the multiple temperature sensors in use across the tank. These tools make it a snap for the controls engineer to replace their current temperature system and give the brewmaster an accurate, consistent temperature reading of the inside of the mash tun.
If you would like more information on the Wyze Temp PLUS Brewer’s Kit, contact Dave or Ron at Matrix Product Development. (608) 834-1661 or email@example.com.