According to the Australian Brewers Association, the total economic activity of beer production exceeded $ 16.9 billion. Due to the international boom in craft beers, Australian HOP growers are having heady days. Hop products are used to create the bitter taste of beer. However, they need to be dried precisely before using them in the brewing process. The drying is very sensitive because a single discrepancy can make a huge difference in the quality of beer taste. Hurll Nu-Way brings their expertise to ensure an efficient drying process.
The hop drying plant consists of air heating burner units that are designed to heat the process air in a duct at the inlet of the circulating fan. The hot air is delivered to the drying floor. The burner is designed to operate with LPG and the delivered air is actually a mixture of ambient air and the products of the combustion.
The burner is fitted with a combustion air blower designed to supply 100% of the required combustion air volume at maximum burner firing rate. The combustion air rate is fixed. The process air flow can be set at the rate required by the operation (as long as the minimum flow required satisfying the relevant pressure switches and the high-temperature cut-off is achieved).
The nominal maximum energy output of the burner system is 10.4GJ/h but the actual firing rate will be determined by the set-point on the temperature control instrument as selected by the operator. The burner ignition and safety system is designed to comply with Australian Standard AS3814 (which is currently being updated) and is approved (subject to final commissioning) by Energy Safe Victoria.
On system startup, the fan draws sufficient ambient air through the system to change the total internal volume five times. This purging process is designed to remove any unburned (and potentially explosive) gasses from the system.
The LPG pressure is monitored by high and low-pressure switches in the fuel train to ensure that the gas pressure remains within the prescribed range. Other interlocks that monitor functions external to the burner system but important to its safe operation may be wired into the LFL system. Once the burner has been started and the fans are running and this is proved by their pressure switches, the ignition sequence commences.
The whole drying process is running very smoothly without any deterioration of the quality of the hops. We are really glad that we can help in this booming local industry. For any assistance or learn more about this process, please contact us.