Deschutes Brewery

Deschutes Brewery View as PDF

“We were looking for a solution that could connect our old infrastructure with minimal overhead, and that’s exactly what Samsara delivers. It was easy to install, see the data in the cloud, and get it back into our on-prem systems as well.”

Tim Alexander, Brewery Technology Operations Manager at Deschutes Brewery

Deschutes Brewery, one of the largest craft breweries in the US, partnered with Samsara to help minimize nonessential capital upgrades and increase equipment lifespan in their main brewing facility.

  • Real-time monitoring of asset power and vibration provides a clear picture of asset health and actionable data for capital planning and maintenance decisions.

  • Alerts & Notifications provide peace of mind and enable maintenance teams to respond quickly to minimize downtime 

  • An Open API means real-time data is easily shared with historians and other applications for additional analysis

Meet Deschutes Brewery

As one of the largest craft breweries in the US, Deschutes is laser-focused on maintaining the ability to innovate quickly while continuing to operate as efficiently as possible. In order to meet their objectives, Deschutes knows they need to stay agile, making smart investment decisions on capital intensive projects. So when a potential $750,000 investment in a redundant chiller for their brews was on the table, Tim Alexander, Deschutes’ Brewery Operations Technology Manager, turned to Samsara to help provide better insight into the health of their existing chiller.

Real-time power and vibration monitoring help reduce spend

In order to assess the health of their existing chiller, Deschutes deployed Samsara power and vibration monitoring. With real-time data transmitted directly to the Samsara dashboard, the team was able to point to stable vibration readings, in line with general standards, indicating that the chiller was in good health. This gave Deschutes the confidence to hold off on investing in a redundant chiller.

“The data we get from Samsara has helped do more effective capital planning, prioritize our spending, and reduce our overall costs. Operating with a single chiller isn’t a small risk, but we were able to confidently show that our chiller was stable and hold off on making another large investment.”

Deschutes continues to regularly assess risk using this data and has been able to effectively defer the purchase of a redundant chiller for two years. And though it’s in good health now, Tim and his team will be notified of any early indicators of failure, like abnormal vibration, thanks to text, email, and call out alerts from the Samsara dashboard. “Samsara’s notifications have been a weight off of our maintenance manager’s and our engineer minds as well. If anything does go wrong, we’ll know what’s happening when it happens and be able to react quickly” he said.

Optimizing processes to extend asset lifespan

In addition to its role in guiding capital planning, Deschutes has used power monitoring data to adjust its brewing process and reduce demand on its primary chiller. After noticing several power spikes for the chiller in the Samsara dashboard, the team compared the data alongside what production lines were doing that day. After finding these spikes were associated with a higher chiller load, Tim and his team were able to optimize how they spread out our coolings and fermentations to reduce demand on the chiller.

“Overall this creates greater efficiency because we can now keep our power use lower and more steady reducing the strain placed on the chiller, and ultimately increasing its lifespan.”

Easy installation and setup

One of the reasons Deschutes decided to partner with Samsara was the ease of installation and integration of the solution, particularly with older assets. With their chiller completely disconnected from their existing control system, integration would have required extensive maintenance and electrical work. Samsara’s Industrial Gateway was able to act as a bridge, communicating directly with the chiller’s PLC and with their plant historian via the open API.

This was a big factor for Tim Alexander and his team- “We were looking for a solution that could connect our old infrastructure with minimal overhead, and that’s exactly what Samsara delivers. It was easy to install, see the data in the cloud, and get it back into our on-prem systems as well.”

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