Emerson and Colorado State University collaborate on new brewing innovation center

The advanced facility will give students hands-on automation experience and address the growing demand for highly skilled workers in the brewing industry.

Emerson and Colorado State University (CSU) are teaming up to fund and build the Emerson Brewing Innovation Center, where students will get hands-on experience using the latest automation technologies.

Opening in the fall on CSU’s Fort Collins campus, the Emerson Brewing Innovation Center will be the main educational hub for the Fermentation Sciences and Technology program. Students will learn the ins and outs of automation and the Industrial Internet of Things for the brewing industry.

The Emerson Brewing Innovation Center plans to address the growing demand for highly skilled workers with expertise in fermentation sciences and proficiency in automation technology. The number of U.S. breweries increased 321 percent from 2007 to 2017 — many of which rely on automation. Students at the center will gain experience with Emerson’s advanced automation technologies, learning firsthand how automation helps brewing companies to optimize operations, detect and address quality issues in real time, reduce downtime and shorten changeovers.

“Partnerships like these enable us to give our students experience with industry standards and help them prepare for the job market,” says Jeff Callaway, associate director of Fermentation Science and Technology at CSU. “The new center will enhance our fermentation science academic program while strengthening ties to the industry.”

Specifically, the Emerson Brewing Innovation Center will feature two brewing systems. Emerson Impact Partner Lakeside will build the systems, which will feature elements of Emerson’s Plantweb portfolio of IIoT technologies used in brewing automation: a DeltaV distributed control system, Micro Motion flow meters, Rosemount measurement technology, and ASCO and Baumann valves.  

The center is only one of 350 other secondary education partnerships Emerson has created to support finding solutions to address the skills gap in digital automation technologies.

“We are focused on helping train the digital workforce of the future while advancing education, innovation and diversity in the industry,” says Lal Karsanbhai, executive president of Emerson’s Automation Solutions business. “The Emerson Brewing Innovation Center will mark the beginning of a strong and continued partnership with CSU.”

In addition to the center, Emerson is donating $10,000 toward a CSU diversity fellowship to help set up the brewing innovation center and a scholarship for the fermentation program.

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