Phillips Malt Works

Phillips decided to take control of malting their own barley. Producing malt in-house allows them to support local farms while also giving them the freedom to experiment with various roasts. The process is quite involved and the facilities are expensive. My part in this project was installing all the controls and writing the code to automate much of the process.

There are a number of stages to malting barley and each stage requires just the right temperature, humidity, and duration. The program I wrote allows the malster (someone who malts barley) to program recipes which automatically adjusts the environmental controls at the appropriate times.

The video below shows the upstairs of the malt house. Below the malt is a perforated floor to allow air to cycle through using the 100 hp blower. The humidity is controlled by spraying the barley from above and also by adjusting the ratio of fresh to recirculated air. The barley is mixed at regular intervals throughout the process. The final stage of malting is roasting, and the entire room becomes an oven, after which the floor drops down and the malt is poured into an auger which delivers it to a silo.