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SAIMC: Vaal branch
November 2012, SAIMC

The Vaal branch continues on its quest to break new ground. On 6 September it organised a successful tour of the Sedibeng brewery, popularly known by its flagship brand of Heineken. Despite the heavy rains that pounded most of south Gauteng on that day, there was a good turnout for both the plant visit and the technology meeting that followed that evening.

The group at Sedibeng brewery.
The group at Sedibeng brewery.

The brewery tour was the first highlight in a series of events lined up on the Vaal branch calendar. Having been postponed in June, the big day finally arrived and what an informative experience it was for the group. Our hostess for the day, Busisiwe Mabuse made light work of the task at hand and was excellent at providing us with process related information.

She took us around the plant, explaining every stage of the brewing process. We also had the chance to meet the production manager who took the time to answer all technical questions that arose from the group. Due to safety reasons our movements were restricted to walk ways, the non-accessible areas were shown to us on strategically located video monitors. The plant has a state-of-the-art instrumentation and control system and the bottling plant gives one the opportunity to witness high precision technology at work.

So from the delivery of malt and hops to the storage of bottled beer in the warehouse ready for dispatch, the group was able to witness the making of some of the finest beer in the country. At the end of the tour, Solly Mabitsela thanked the hostess and the company for giving us this golden opportunity to visit the plant.

Technology evening

In the evening back at our venue, Andre van Schalkwyk from Aveng Grinaker LTA Instruments presented on level measurement using differential pressure principles. Ever struggled with the installation of capillary tubing using a cat ladder? Well, this system has the advantages of easy installation, reduced inventory and improved response time. This new technology, the Rosemount Electronic Remote Seals (3051S ERS) utilises two pressure sensors, a primary and secondary which are connected via two wire HART architecture for power and signal transmission. The secondary transmitter shares its pressure readings with the primary which is programmed to do calculations to give level measurement readings. The use of this technology could however be limited due to some harsh plant conditions and the cost factor. Whether these transmitters could be linked wirelessly at reasonable cost is the subject of ongoing research. So far we have to be content with using a cable to link the two transmitters, as it also provides power to the secondary one.

Solly Mabitsela (l) thanks Andre van Schalkwyk after the presentation.
Solly Mabitsela (l) thanks Andre van Schalkwyk after the presentation.

The next big event by the calendar is the Golf Day planned for 23 November. Please help us make a success of this day.

The Vaal branch of the SAIMC will be holding a golf day on Friday 23 November 2012 at the Riviera Hotel & Country Club.

A four ball costs R1600 and a watering hole sponsorship will cost R600.

For further information and bookings please contact Hendie Grobbelaar – or call her on 083 455 3291.

Or you may contact:

Solly Mabitsela (SAIMC Vaal Branch chairman), +27 83 381 9962,

Eben Grobbelaar (SAIMC Vaal Branch vice chairman), +27 83 405 0654,

Supplied By: SAIMC
Tel: 086 107 2462
Fax: 086 651 5238
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