To ensure a consistent beer taste, the Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. in Chico, Calif., uses Aquionics’ UV technology in its process — UV-C, to be precise. The UV-C part of the UV spectrum is highly effective at breaking down unwanted by-products from the water purification process, ensuring optimal beer taste at all times.
“The taste of our beer is a key selling point,” commented Aaron Porter, Sierra Nevada’s Plant Services Supervisor. “Water is the main ingredient of beer and, even though we have a great water source, by law it needs to be chlorinated prior to use. That’s where the Aquionics UV technology plays its part – UV has proved to be highly effective at destroying any residual chlorine remaining in the process post-treatment. In this way, it ensures the consistent taste of our beer. We now have three Aquionics units preforming this role.
“As well as dechlorination, we also have an Aquionics unit installed on our de-areation (DA) skid,” Porter added. “This is to help disinfect the water returning to the storage tank. It will also be used to destruct ozone that we use for sanitizing the DA system.”
In addition to these two applications, the brewery is planning to use UV as part of its water reclamation project, whereby water used for cleaning bottles and kegs will be disinfected and reused. UV also has many other uses in the brewing, beverage and process industries, including the disinfection of municipal or private water supplies, de-aerated liquor (part of the high-gravity brewing process), clean-in-place (CIP) water, sugar syrups, sweeteners and yeast preparation
“These applications are demonstrative of the unique ability of UV to perform many roles, including disinfection and chemical breakdown,” said Nancy Hatley, Aquionics’ Western Regional Manager. UV is probably the only technology that can perform all of these tasks.
Sierra Nevada thus far reports excellent performance from the Aquionics UV systems. The reliability and versatility of the technology has prompted the brewery to commission two more Aquionics dechlorination units for its brand new facility in North Carolina.
“Sierra Nevada is a regional brewer that has had tremendous success over recent years. It also clearly has big ambitions – the new North Carolina brewery is testament to this,” Hatley added. “We’re delighted to have played a part – however small – in this success and wish the company much success in the coming years.”