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Innovation & Technologie Angebot

An accurate and affordable device for real-time monitoring of wine’s temperature

Country of Origin: Spain
Reference Number: TOES20151102002
Publication Date: 3 November 2015

Summary

A Spanish SME has developed a portable, multichannel and low-cost device for real-time monitoring of the temperature of wine along its entire production process. Its high accuracy allows measuring temperatures with an estimated error less than 0.3 ºC. This system has already been tested and installed in a winery and it is operating successfully. The SME is open to technical cooperation for implementing it in wineries, and commercial cooperation (and/or distribution) with technical assistance.

Description

Temperature is a crucial factor throughout the wine production and maturing process. Specially, control of fermentation temperature is a critically important factor in quality wine making. Fermentation produces heat and can cause the temperature inside the fermenter to rise to unacceptable levels. High fermentation temperatures tend to eject volatile aromatic compounds and increase alcohol concentrations through evaporation.

Temperature control is also an important consideration in wine storage. If the wine is exposed to too high temperatures (in excess of 25 °C) for long periods of time, it may be spoiled. If it is exposed to temperatures that are too cold, the wine can freeze and expand. Dramatic temperature swings can also cause adverse chemical reactions in the wine that may lead to a variety of wine faults.

For these reasons, monitoring temperature and maintaining ideal temperature ranges is a very important part of making a great wine. Excesses above or below the ideal range will have a direct impact on the finished wine.

A Spanish SME has developed an innovative multichannel, mobile device with four temperature probes that can comprehensively monitor the manufacturing and storage conditions of wines.

The integrated system of sensors can register temperature values taken continuously from different points of each tank or barrel (or other key areas of production and/or transportation of wine) enabling real time monitoring. The collected data can be accessed both from the checkpoint within the winery premises or remotely via mobile applications at any time. The alarm system will be activated with the smallest temperature variations within the customized standard thresholds.

In the competitive world of wine production, where quality is a major factor in business success, it is essential to certify the accuracy of manufacturing processes to customers and consumers. The developed device ensures better control of the winemaking process and avoids negative consequences of temperature fluctuations, since it is able to monitor temperature variations under 0.3ºC, following UNE and ISO standards. Moreover, temperature records can be saved for later analysis, studying temperature variations and their correlation with the final quality, to achieve higher quality, reproducible wines.

This system allows monitoring up to 4 different temperature points simultaneously; it can monitor several tanks at the same time, the temperature in the hold, coolant temperature, and other areas of interest. Apart from obtaining an overview of various temperatures on site there is a cost saving from using a single device.

Thanks to its portability, the device does not need to be installed in a fixed location, being able to monitor the temperature of a selection of products in the cellar. For example, it is possible to track the temperature of some barrels or tanks, but also change their location to other rooms or outside the store, or even in the transport vehicles, being always able to monitor the product temperature chain from the cellar until they reach the selling point.

The device does not require a complex installation (cabinet or rack type) or the presence of specialized personnel. It is only needed to launch the device, place the supplied temperature probes (adapted to the specific needs of each winery), and link it to a computer, mobile phone or tablet.

Although this system has already been validated and installed in a winery, it could also be employed to other industries (brewery, liquors, etc) in which control of the temperature is crucial.

In order to bring to market this technology, the SME is interested both in (i) technical cooperation with wineries to install the device in its premises, adaptation to specific need or joint further development; and (ii) commercial agreement with technical assistance (either remotely or on site) with companies wishing to distribute this device through its sales network.
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Advantages and Innovations

The most remarkable advantage of this device is its high-accuracy. Unlike most similar devices on the market, the accuracy of this device has been ratified by an independent official body, according to one of the most demanding standards in this field: the one applied to measure temperature on medical devices. The estimated error in the measurement of this device is, in the worst cases, less than 0.3°C. Most similar products in the market offer a much lower accuracy ratio: at least 1°C and often 2°C error.

This device also incorporate a number of additional features of great importance for the winemaking industry - not currently available in other similar products-, such us:

- Portable with wireless data transmission: It does not need to be set up in a fixed location.
- Multi-channel: It allows the simultaneously monitoring of up to 4 different temperature points.
- High-precision: able to monitor temperature variations under 0.3ºC
- Low-cost
- Very easy to use: It does not require a complex installation or be handled by highly qualified staff.
- Flexibility: It can work along with other pre-existing systems, so using it does not imply giving up the systems already installed in a cellar. It may reach other points in the facility or equipment not covered by the other systems. So, this device can augment the existing data and provide additional cover for the overall monitoring scheme.

Stage Of Development

Already on the market

Stage Of Development Comment

The research project which gave rise to this device has included several stages of te¬chnology validation to ensure the robustness of its operation in real life scenarios. In fact, it has already been successfully installed in a winery within our region and has been chosen by their winemakers as the best solution for remote monitoring of the temperature of their wines.

Requested partner

- Type of partner sought: Industries / Distribution companies
- Specific area of activity of the partner: Wineries, spirits, breweries.
- Task to be performed: Installation of the device in its premises. Joint further development. Technical cooperation for specific needs. Distribution.

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