One of the largest beer companies in the United States needed stainless steel supports in one a brewery. American Refrigeration, who was in charge of the install, had the contractor contact Stainless Structurals to assist with the job.
When it comes to many food and beverage processing plants, stainless steel is the only option that can handle the corrosive aspects as well as meet FDA and USDA requirements. American Refrigeration had a project to replace both indoor and outdoor piping in an industrial brewery. The piping itself was made of stainless steel. So the support beams also had to be of stainless steel to prevent corrosion and increase durability.
Beam Specifications for the Brewery
The engineers determined that best alloy and shape for these supports was a 316/L stainless steel wide-flange beam. They also decided the best size for these stiffener beams was a 4 inch by 13 pounds per foot beam. First, Stainless Structurals provided the stainless steel beams in standard 20 feet lengths. Then we cut them to length on the job site to fit the support span needed. 316/L was the best choice because it has a higher corrosive resistance than 304/L stainless steel and these beams were in very corrosive environments.
Another reason for using stainless steel beams for this application is the ability to clean and wash down equipment without worrying about internal contamination.
Benefits of Stainless Steel Beams
Many times fabricators have used tubing or pipe as supports in these applications. The major issue with using those is that they can be nicked and dinged. Hence, it can form cracks and leaks. Water or chemicals can seep into the inside of the tubing and cause corrosion, contamination and cracking, thus requiring replacement. Stainless steel beams, on the other hand, have no interior hollow spots for this corrosion to occur. They can also easily support the weight of the pipes.
Availability of Stainless Steel for Food and Beverage Applications
One can find stainless steel products food and beverage plants all over the world for many different applications. These include conveyor systems, tanks, containers, supports, machinery parts, skids, platforms, processing equipment and more. Engineers and equipment designers are now using stainless steel channels or beams in place of tubing and pipe. Stainless Structurals can provide any size stainless steel beam or other shape required. We can provide shapes, just like these stiffener beams, in a multitude of different stainless alloys. We are here to help and look forward to working with you on your next food and beverage application.