State-of-the-art CIP validation using SMW 100 for tank cleaning at the Tucher brewery in Fürth. When building the new Tucher brewery, absolute priority was given to safety in the brewing process in conjunction with a resource-efficient plant layout.

Orbital Tank Cleaner Tornado

Consequently, orbital cleaners made by GEA in combination with the SMW 100 CIP validation sensor have been selected for cleaning. The fermentation tanks to be cleaned have a capacity of 2,400 hl, with a diameter of 4.1 m and an overall height of 22 m.

In contrast to conventional systems, the compact head of the SMW 100 contains the complete evaluation electronics and software and, compared with other products, the unit is considerably more cost-efficient. The patented sensor continuously monitors the function of the orbital cleaners in the tanks. During cleaning, a continuous signal is sent to the control system; a signal interruption would immediately indicate that a malfunction has occurred.

Function of the SMW 100 sensor:

Monitoring Sensor SMW 100

This sensor for cleaning validation and the operating method are unique. There are no comparable systems on the market; other systems either register the pressure of the jet or detect the noise in the tank.

Due to its physical design, the pressure sensor can only register jets that hit the sensor directly, which does not work for a rotating jet cleaner. If at all, the sensor only registers jets discontinuously. It is hence impossible to exactly monitor the flow patterns of the jets or the spraynozzles!

The background noise can only be used to detect whether cleaning liquid is running. But not whether the cleaner is turning or whether the jet flow patterns are correct or the spraynozzles are possibly blocked!

A special process enables the SMW 100 to monitor the operation of the cleaner during an integration period of approx. 20 seconds. If no jet passes the sensor during this period, the sensor’s output signal switches off and the sensor signals that the cleaner is stationary. Another function is made possible by signal change-over in the sensor. Each jet that is registered is signalled by setting the sensor output, so that each jet can be detected by downstream electronics (optional). This allows the cleaning pattern and hence the entire cleaning process to be monitored. Alternatively, it is also possible to detect a blocked spraynozzle. All in all, the SMW 100 system provides us with an intelligent detection technology, which has not existed in this form so far.


Mr. Rammelmeier, Head of Quality Management at Tucher, commented:

“Using GEA orbital cleaners has helped us to reduce our cleaning times significantly. The entire system has proven effective, especially with respect to top fermenting beer vessels.”

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