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Thread: Reverse Osmosis 101

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Israel
    Posts
    51

    Reverse Osmosis 101

    Would somebody mind posting a short introduction to RO systems - size requirements, cost of system, cost of consumerables, etc. This is for a 10 bbl brewhouse, 1500 bbl/yr capacity, very hard water.

    TIA

    David

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    West Chester, PA
    Posts
    391
    do you have space for a water tank?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Israel
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    I'm not sure I understand the question - how large of a water tank & why?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Stavanger Norway
    Posts
    318
    David Im just starting out with a RO system.
    Basicaly calculate how much brew water you consume in an average brew day, calculate for more than one brew if you double or triple batch you should have a tank which will give you enough RO water to get through the whole day. they are often slow filling and fast to empty.
    You will use water salts, mine consumes about 1 kg per 1000 liters.

    the rest im learning, I just posted a question about mineralizing back the ro water. someone mentioned to mix back a % of city water which seems like a good Idea. so u may wish to add city water in valve on your RO tank.

    Every beer has its need of minerals, Im findig that RO water alone wont make a very tasty ale, its not so bad for lager styles. but I am at the point where Im learning more about water composition.

    Good luck, there are many here who will help you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    602

    ro, ro, its off to brew we go...

    I used a RO system and here are some points to consider.
    -get a company that has experiance in industial, not just residential, instalations and get them to cost it out for you for free!!
    -you will need to soften prior to RO, so youll be buying softener salt.
    -all piping to brewhouse has to be schedual 80 PVC (or use stainless)- RO water will corrode metal. You will need a pump to get it there.
    -Put a auto fill valve on your new CLT so that the filter tops it off as you use. This way you dont run out of water.
    -bone up on your water chemistry, every beer will need salt additons. Every style can be made well. A scale weighing in gramms will help.
    -have a seperate source for cleaning but use it for rinsing outside of tanks, no water spots!
    Operations Director, Tin Roof BC
    ted@tinroofbeer.com
    "Your results may vary"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    121
    Here is a list of suppliers for you:
    http://www.science.co.il/EarthScienc...es.asp?s=water

    I would talk to the Argad (Kinetico is a good brand) and Nirosoft.

    I would get a 15-20 barrel tank and run the RO water into it, and then feed it to your brewery equipment, CIP, and for anything that will touch the beer.

    You need something that can get you about 300 liters per hour which should be fine for your capacity. Although it doesnt hurt to go slightly higher. Control the unit with a timer, and a level switch on your tank. Then you won't have to baby sit it. If you do more than one brew per day, you will probably need a larger unit. I get by with that capacity on 20 Barrel brews.

    Take city water, and run it through a particle filter 5 micron, and then into a activated carbon filter. Use a water softener shell (the kind used in an average american house) complete with programmed backflush. Use at least 25Kg - 50Kg of Activated Carbon preferably from coconut shell carbon.

    Place another particle filter into the line right before your reverse osmosis. Use a 1 micron filter in it. Spiral wound cartridges are fine for this purpose. You want depth filtration. Now, these filters and carbon prevent particulates and chlorine from reaching your reverse osmosis membranes.

    Now the water is pumped into the RO Unit, the RO water will go to your holding tank, and the retentate (the high mineral content flush water) will have to go down a drain.

    Good luck and let us know what you come up with.

    PS: Adding City Water back into your RO water is a bad idea all the way around. Add minerals back to the mash. You can make whatever water you desire. Yes, minerals are very important to the brew, and you can't brew good tasting beer without them! The RO water is a blank slate that you can write whatever you want! It just depends on the style of beer you want to brew. That is where you can show your mastery of this craft.
    Last edited by zbrew2k; 08-24-2005 at 11:51 AM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Israel
    Posts
    51
    All hail the gods of RO!

    Zbrew - you did everything but make the phone calls for me. Thanks for your help.

    David

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    121

    Thumbs up

    You're welcome! I'd be happy to help consult for free...although I would need a round-trip First/Biz class ticket and accomodations.

    Again, let us know what you install.

    B

    PS: Thank Google, all wise, and all knowing....is it just me that thinks thats a bit scary? Type your own name in sometime....
    Last edited by zbrew2k; 08-24-2005 at 11:56 AM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Israel
    Posts
    51
    After all the discussion about RO from last summer, we're finally building our facility in Tel Aviv. Now that I have the water analysis in hand, I'm seeing that the only measure truly out of line with our planned menu of ales is the chlorides - measured at 234 ppm.

    I would really hate to have to RO - big extra cash up front, inadequate water flow, wasted water, etc. I've seen one ref say with cl measure of 200-250 we should only brew stouts/porters; another says only beers > 1.050 OG. Anybody out there with cl > 200 not RO'ing?

    Thanks

    David

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