Cool invention: High-Tech 1871: How a stroke of genius made Bavarian beer world-famous 150 years ago

Cool invention
High-Tech 1871: How a stroke of genius made Bavarian beer world-famous 150 years in the past

The brewers owe the truth that Bavarian beer turned an export hit to an invention that introduced concerning the breakthrough in refrigeration know-how 150 years in the past.

© Nicolas Armer // Picture Alliance

Open the fridge, take out the beer. What is taken as a right at the moment was unthinkable not so way back. 150 years in the past, Carl Linde revolutionized cooling know-how – and beer turned an export hit.

The stroke of genius of the younger engineer Carl Linde ready the Bavarian 150 years in the past beer the best way to the export hit. The barely 30-year-old mechanical engineering professor Linde described within the “Bayerischer Industrie- und Gewerbeblatt” in 1871 how an “improved ice and cooling machine” ought to work.

Instead of tens of 1000’s of tons in winter ice sawing out of lakes and ponds and taking them to the fermentation cellars in horse-drawn automobiles, the brewers had been quickly in a position to brew their pale lager all yr spherical – and export them. After the flip of the century, each tenth beer drunk worldwide got here from Bavaria.

Revolution in beer manufacturing

Linde has “built the first successful, functionally reliable refrigeration machine”, says the know-how historian Matthias Pühl. This not solely revolutionized beer manufacturing, it was additionally the breakthrough for industrial refrigeration know-how: “He was a pioneer.” Linde, who quickly went into enterprise for himself, additionally offered his methods to dairies, chocolate producers, chemical factories and mines.

Refrigeration know-how is omnipresent at the moment. Almost 144 million cooling methods are working in Germany alone: Refrigerators within the family, refrigerated cabinets in supermarkets, refrigeration methods in workplaces, museums and working theaters, for instance. Corona vaccine is frozen. “Without refrigeration technology, the operation of a data center would not be possible,” says Karl-Heinz Thielmann, President of the Association of German Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Specialists (DKVF).

Or in trade: “High-precision products must be manufactured at a constant temperature, otherwise the tolerances will not be correct.” The gross sales are gigantic; Even within the non-commercial enterprise worldwide, “we’re talking about an order of magnitude of over 100 billion euros”.

Novel cooling system

When water evaporates on the pores and skin, it cools the pores and skin. Linde’s refrigeration machine works in line with this precept. Liquid ammonia evaporates at minus 33 levels. If it’s pumped in liquid kind into an atmosphere to be cooled and may increase in gaseous kind, it cools the atmosphere. Then it’s fed out once more, compressed by a compressor – and the cycle begins once more.

Linde’s article within the “Industrie- und Gewerbeblatt” in 1871 instantly aroused the curiosity of brewers. Up till then, they needed to procure monumental portions of pure ice for his or her fermentation cellars, for instance the Hacker-Pschorr brewery in Munich as much as 24,000 tons per yr. That was costly, and with the ice from rivers and mountains additionally germs acquired into the fermentation cellars.

According to the calculations of the younger mechanical engineer, “1 pound of coal would have to be enough to produce a cent of ice in an ideal ice machine”. The director of the most important Austrian brewery, August Deiglmayr, visited Linde in Munich in the summertime of 1871 and requested him to design a cooling machine for his brewery in Trieste. According to the Berlin professor Hans-Liudger Dienel, who researched the corporate’s historical past, they lastly agreed on a check facility in Gabriel Sedlmayr’s Spaten brewery in Munich.

Tough beginnings

This machine turned out to be leaky; one employee was injured. Linde then designed a second system – with a special seal, half as heavy, half as costly, and simpler to take care of. The machine manufacturing facility in Augsburg constructed it, and it was put into operation in Trieste in 1877 and ran there for 31 years. Today it’s within the House of Bavarian History in Regensburg: it weighs six tons, is 5 meters lengthy, two meters vast and excessive.

The pastor’s son Carl Linde from Upper Franconia had studied in Zurich, labored at Borsig in Berlin and the Krauss locomotive manufacturing facility in Munich and was now a freshly appointed professor in Munich. When he resigned and based his “Gesellschaft für Linde’s Eismaschinen”, he fearful: “During the first few months our quiet beginning was answered by an almost oppressive calm in the progress of negotiations and orders for the delivery of refrigeration systems,” so “als the first urgent need is already satisfied, “he wrote in his memoirs.

But then got here the delicate winters of 1883/84 in Germany and 1890/91 within the USA. Natural ice was in brief provide, and Linde was joyful a couple of “formal storm surge” of orders. According to Pühl, he had outfitted 445 breweries with cooling machines by the top of the Eighties. At the top of 1929, his firm had offered 6,599 refrigeration methods, solely a 3rd of them to breweries. The Sedlmayr household of brewers retained their seat on the supervisory board till after the Second World War.

Linde had its machines, a few of which had been in operation till the Sixties, constructed by machine factories – however the firm stored order acceptance, building and upkeep in-house, as Pühl emphasizes: “In this way, he secured direct and exclusive contact with customers. ” The Linde Group left refrigeration know-how in 2004 and is now the world’s largest producer of business gases.

Roland Losch / tpo