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Fluctuating flow rate in havily hopped beers- Brew 80 Alfa Laval

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  • Fluctuating flow rate in havily hopped beers- Brew 80 Alfa Laval

    Do you guys experience fluctuating flow rates for heavily hopped beers while centrifuging? All of our regular beers go well but in the case of our IPA's centrifuge flow rate swings like crazy. Fluctuating flow rates are causing clarity issues in the final beer.
    Last edited by Dheeraj; 04-09-2023, 05:56 AM.

  • #2
    I suspect you are getting slugs of yeast/hop debris sliding down the cone as the transfer progresses and overloading the c/fuge. One problem with a disc bowl centrifuge is that the gaps between the paring discs are so narrow, they can trap hop debris, even macerated hops as found in type 90 and 45 pellets, are almost completely unsuitable for whole hops should you be using those. You would need a decanter centrifuge if dealing with whole hops.

    You need to take off the heavy sludge, probably more slowly than you are currently doing so, or perhaps take off twice after a period of at least 12 hours between removals. The big boys will take off into a dose back tank, which is roused, and dosed back in, typically starting after about 10% of the run, and aiming to complete the dose back 10% before the end of the main beer run, basically to ensure it all gets dosed back in. They may also have turbidity meters in the discharge will will adjust the flow rate.

    Of course a small brewery probably doesn't have this level of sophistication/complexity, so an alternative is to remove the bulk of the really solid settlement, and briefly (gas) rouse the FV to mix anything else in to obtain a more consistent supply so you are not having to monitor so constantly.


    • #3
      Thanks, Dick for the explanation. We will also try some alternate methods like (Hop gun/Torpedo), Cyro is expensive but will try to do some experiments to figure out the dose for replacement.

      What is the solid intake capacity of decenter centrifuge? Any data related to the max or min gms/hl of hops if we use a decanter centrifuge.



      • #4
        Re decanter centrifuge - I really don't know, but I have worked in breweries where one was used for removing settling (not fully settled though) trub in a whirlpool as it was supposed to reduce losses and speed up the process time, and another where one was used to concentrate yeast slurries surplus to re-pitching requirements, but several sites used disc bowl centrifuges which could produce toothpaste consistency discharges. But of course, these had to be suitable speed and throughput, and set up correctly to do this. I'd have a chat with AL, and see if they can suggest something - perhaps wider gaps between the discs, but of course that is likely to reduce clarity of the outlet beer unless the throughput is reduced to compensate for the longer settling distance.