The brewhouse is the heart of a brewery. All equipment required for wort production is installed in the brewhouse. The output of the brewhouse has a big impact on efficiency and quality of a brewery. The yield depends on the raw materials, the equipment, the mash process, the lautering operations, etc. Main goal of the mash process is to maximize the conversion of starch into fermentable sugars. That's why this enzyme driven process has to be temperature and pH controlled precisely.
In the mashing process enzymes break down the starch of the malt into fermentable sugars like Maltose. As every enzyme they have a pH optimum that needs to be ensured in order to have a reproducible start point of the brewing process.
In the lauter tun the mash will be separated into the clear liquid and the residual grain. The pH value is maintained below 6.0 to avoid extraction of undesired components like tannins. High contents of dissolved oxygen might lead to off-flavors due to oxidation of some sensitive components.
After sparging of the residual grain the the clear liquid is called wort. It's boiled in the wort copper or wort kettle together with hops. The boiling process terminates finally enzymatic processes, denaturizes proteins, and adds flavor and bitterness to the wort.
Right after the wort cooler the wort is aerated to increase the amount of oxygen in the cold wort. Depending on the type of beer aeration uses either sterile air or pure oxygen. The intention of aeration is to provide enough dissolved oxygen for the vegetative growth of the yeast cells prior to their change in metabolism.
App Note - DO in wort aerationBitburger, a major German brewery, uses Visiferm DO to measure dissolved oxygen after wort aeration in Bitburg, Germany. Featured: wort aeration
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