Sight Glass Light Options for Conical Fermenters

Like other critical components of getting the perfect brew, conical fermenters need to be closely observed. Fermentation is part art, which means you need to involve your senses: seeing, smelling, tasting. It’s also part science, which means that you need a way to confirm that each stage of the process is going according to plan: that the cleaning solution is fully rinsed, that there is no cross batch contamination, etc.  In short, you need a sight glass window on your vessel, and a light to illuminate its interior.

brewing fermenter sight glass lights
Conical fermenter sight glass lights come in various types and configurations. In my post today I’ll review some of your options, so you can choose the optimal light for your situation. By the way, although I’m focusing on fermenters, which may be conical or straight, the same advice will apply to any brewing equipment vessel, including mash lauter tuns, finishing tanks, and the like.

LED lighting for food & beverage sight glass applications

Food and Beverage ApplicationExperts in the $738 billion food and beverage manufacturing industry know that, for consumers, taste begins with the eyes. This is especially true with beverages, for whom hue, clarity, cloudiness, transparency, opacity and foam are very tightly controlled. Such the domain of the processing engineer, who depends on the sight glass and associated lighting to observe the process media.

How to Size a Sight Glass Light for a Process Vessel

How to Size a Sight Glass Light for a Process Vessel?

Sight Glass Light diagram for process vessel

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ah, the world of lighting used to be so simple. When you needed to illuminate the interior of a process vessel or tank, you selected a halogen light by its watts. Typically you used a 50 watt light because that’s what the manufacturers commonly offered. If that wasn’t bright enough, then you used a 100 watt light. It got hot, but you didn’t have much choice. The decision for your sight glass light was simple.

5 Key Elements When Specifying Your Sight Glass

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I have a tank and need a sight glass.  What are my options?  Although this may seem like an innocuous question… many factors come into play.  While the choice is clear for some customers, there are many more for whom this choice is anything but clear.

Sight glasses allow you to safely observe processes inside your tanks, vessels, pipes, and reactors. It is a window that allows operators to inspect the process media, observe reactions, observe the functioning of mixing equipment, verify the presence or absence of media, see liquid level, etc. It consists of metal, glass and gasket components.  In order to ensure optimal performance a variety of factors need to be considered. Here are 5 critical things to consider when specifying a sight glass for your process.

Let’s get started.

Make your CHEM Show visit worthwhile

CHEM Show 2015, the trade show dedicated to the Chemical industry, is headed back to the Javits Center in New York City from November 17 through 19.  Along with more than 300+ chemical industry professionals, representatives from L.J. Star will be on hand to meet and greet our long-time friends (and prospective friends!) in the chemical industry.

Sight Glass Maintenance Tips

Sight Glass Maintenance Tips from L.J. Star IncorporatedSight Glass Products from L.J. Star

The temperatures are warming up, flowers are blooming and spring is thankfully here!  Along with the warmer weather comes the annual task of Spring cleaning –  you know, the time to make your windows sparkle again, dust out all the cobwebs, assess any of winter’s damage or just clear out the clutter.   Believe it or not there are benefits of a good cleaning – that sense of accomplishment (I love crossing things off my list!), getting rid of the dirt and dust that has collected over time and finally making those repairs before it’s too late. Leaving things unchecked or worse ignored can lead to bigger and messier problems.  This holds true for maintaining your sight glasses.

Manufacturing Summit

Ready to roll….  The time and effort deciding where and when to show has been a challenge for some time.   Making the right choices to promote oneself and stay on top of industry trends, demands and forecasting the needs of customers is critical in any business.   So when an opportunity arises you’d be a fool to pass it by.   And this week LJ Star, Inc will be taking advantage of such an opportunity by showing at the American Manufacturing Summit, February 29- March 1, 2016.

 

The Summit is a leadership focused meeting designed around improving plant floor operations and manufacturing strategy across the globe. “This year’s Summit creates an opportunity to examine key case studies around how workforce management, lean manufacturing, process improvement and automation are being rolled out in the world’s best facilities.” Retrieved from http://manusummit.com/

 

The benefits of positioning ourselves as industry leaders as having the most expertise in process control applications/industry requirements.  Our products are critical to operational safety: sight glasses, sight flow indicators, sanitary fittings and lighting.  Roger, John and Eric will be at the LJ Star booth sharing their expertise with those at the American Manufacturing Summit.

Make your CHEM Show visit worthwhile

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CHEM Show 2015, the trade show dedicated to the Chemical industry, is headed back to the Javits Center in New York City from November 17 through 19.  Along with more than 300+ chemical industry professionals, representatives from L.J. Star will be on hand to meet and greet our long-time friends (and prospective friends!) in the chemical industry.

How To Get the Right Sanitary Clamp

Recently, managers at a major U.S. pharmaceutical manufacturer were reminded of the importance of constant vigilance in their containment systems when they discovered leaks in sanitary clamp connections that forced them to scrap costly process media.

In a pharmaceutical or biotechnology setting, process equipment and piping are connected using a stainless steel sanitary clamp that forces together two ferrules, whose raised lips on the pipe ends facilitate a tight connection. Sanitary fittings are made specifically for pharmaceutical applications, where joint cleanliness and access are of paramount importance. Clamps allow quick disassembly for cleaning and sterilization. To prevent the formation of shelves or pockets that can harbor bacteria the ferrules, gasket and clamp must also provide a non-protruding, recess-less product contact surface.

Usually the connections are routine. However, this manufacturer had equipment that was originally used in different plants located in different regions of the world. As a result, some of the connections were mis-matched: one side had a ferrule that met ASME-BPE (Bioprocessing Equipment) standards, but the other side had ferrules made to a different standard. Slight differences in their specifications made alignment and sealing a challenge through pressure and process temperature changes. Managers noticed that some clamps weren’t able to perfectly seal the ferrules, and the resulting leaks forced managers to discard entire batches of process media because there was no way to prove to the FDA that no contamination had occurred.

In their search for a solution to their mismatched ferrule problem, managers devised a torture test for sanitary clamps. Over two months, they tested six different brands of clamps. Clamp after clamp failed their stringent connection-point leakage tests under heat and pressure. The only clamp able to pass the manufacturer’s testing protocol was the Advanced Couplings clamp, distributed exclusively in North America by L.J. Star. These stainless steel clamps are made from investment castings to produce a high quality, precision fit assembly. The secret is the clamp’s unique “Omega” profile, which pushes the ferules into alignment with high clamping efficiency.

In a global industry, the problem of integrating equipment made to different specifications is increasingly common. To learn more about how the right sanitary clamp design can assure reliable connections, see the SlideShare presentation titled “Must-Have Information about Sanitary Fittings.”

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Make Your InterPHEX Visit Worthwhile

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     INTERPHEX 2014, the trade show dedicated to the pharmaceutical industry, is headed to the Javits Center in New York City from March 18 through 20. Along with more than 12,000 pharmaceutical industry professionals, representatives from L.J. Star will be on hand to meet and greet our long-time friends (and prospective friends!) in the pharmaceuticals industry.

     To make your visit to INTERPHEX 2014 just a little easier, we’re offering free exhibit hall admission when you register as our guest by clicking below. This year, we’ll be in Booth 2820, displaying a wide variety of pharmaceutical industry-specific products, including the new LumiStar3000TM luminaire, the world’s brightest sight-glass light.

     This 60mm LED sight-glass light provides four times the light output a typical sight-glass light, improving visibility into your most critical processes. At full brightness, the LumiStar 3000 can output 3000 lumens— four times the light output of a standard 100W halogen luminaire—with less energy and heat. It offers unprecedented, penetrating illumination for all kinds of pharmaceutical process vessels.

     While you’re in Booth 2820, we’ll also be happy to talk with you about our recent projects such as working with a major pharmaceutical company who tested several brands of sanitary fittings to find one that won’t drip.

    INTERPHEX 2014 will bring pharmaceutical and biotechnology professionals from around the world together with leading suppliers like L.J. Star. We hope you can join us in New York City, March 18-20.