In keeping with our educational mission, here’s a post about beer.

There seems to be a surprising overlap (perhaps it’s not so surprising) between the maker/hacker community and the home brew community. We are aware of a few small commercial breweries who are already using Raspberry Pis to drive automation of things like pressure and mash temperature, but until now everybody brewing with a Pi has had to come up with their own solutions.

Until now, that is. Elco, a beer and Pi enthusiast, has produced an open-source fermentation controller for the Raspberry Pi and an Arduino which is available for the whole community to use. (Those of you over legal drinking age, that is.) BrewPi allows you to control the process through a web browser interface. It’s completely user-configurable, will control temperature to within 0.1 degrees Celsius – and it outputs helpful graphs. (We like graphs.)


BrewPi user interface – lots of lovely, lovely graphs. Click to embiggen.

Elco’s currently working a digital specific gravity sensor (which at its current stage of development has to do with a weight dangling from a string), and he’s looking for community help with the continued development of BrewPi. Head over to his website, help out with the codebase and contribute to his wiki – and let us know if you end up using the software to do any brewing yourselves.


Par_Sec avatar

+10 for the use of ’embiggen’ !

joebocop avatar

It’s a perfectly cromulent word.

Mark Smith avatar

“Beer and Pi enthusiast”… Like it! I might use that one… “no fat, just a beer and pi enthusiast!”.

UrSv avatar

VERY useful! I just realized that I can adapt this for a Sous-videPi cooking controller…

ColinD avatar

“Awesome” is such an over-used word but in this case… well… this is just Awesome with a capital Awe :)

Actually it is awesome for a couple of reasons: uber-geekery combined with a highly practical output. And I’m guessing it wouldn’t be too hard to modify the system to monitor and control temperature for other uses, for example fish (no not in the beer… in water in a fish tank).

Best of all I can see this as being the most carrot-dangling of A-level compsci projects: “do well at this project”, says teacher, “and just as you finish your A-levels you can reap the rewards of your efforts”. Superb! … I mean Awesome!

Rotenberry avatar

There is an extensive literature describing the measurement of the density of a fluid by measuring the frequency of an object vibrating in that fluid. This idea works because the fluid forces are proportional to the density. It may even be as simple as measuring the resonant frequencies of the container.

The earliest reference I know is Lamb, H, 1921 On the vibrations of an elastic plate in contact with water. Proc. R. Soc. A. 98, 205–216.

Phil Rogers avatar

Why not use “embiggen”? It’s a perfectly cromulent word.

IgorGlock avatar

looks like a joke

JamesH avatar

Please elaborate – intrigued as to why you think it looks like a joke.

subinznz avatar

Lol this could definitely get on the 5 cool uses for raspberry pi list

MuddyDogs avatar

Definitely cool (to within +/-0.1C) :-) And real kudos for releasing the code as open source! I love the linking of the Raspberry Pi to an Arduino,

Captainwebb avatar

But would a Pi give the full Raspberry flavour, like all those Belgian “fruit” beers?

deltaB avatar

There’s nothing more enjoyable than a Pi and a Pint!

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