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I am building a fermentation fridge and for the controler I'm looking at brew-pi vs STC 1000. One of the advantages of the brew-pi is that it can handle multiple sensors. I don't understand the point of multiple sensors and I can't find information how they would work together. I can only assume it's to get an average temperature of the beer in the fermenter, or otherwise how are they an advantage.

My system will be a single chamber converted fridge using a heat tube for the heating side.

  • Not sure there's a benefit to multiple probes for fermentation control, but if the costs are similar the pi certainly would be more future proof if you plan to expand control one day to other areas of brewing. – DHough Feb 13 '17 at 16:27
  • Hmm ... I have read a couple of comments along the lines of this one from RAD Brewing - but I can't for the life of me figure out why it would be useful - I get the un-required room one but I don't see how the controller would process both the beer as well as the chamber — ` Having three probes is pretty useful – one in the beer, one for the chamber and one for the room. The room one isn’t required but it is interesting to have.` – byronyasgur Feb 13 '17 at 16:57
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    Would depend how advanced you went with the controls. If room temp was higher/cooler than your desired temp you could pump outside air in for temp control. If that's no good use electrical as a secondary source for heat/cool. – DHough Feb 13 '17 at 17:01
  • Yes I just discovered that brew-pi seems to be intelligent to the uses ( ie positions) of the various sensors ( ie in beer vs in chamber) so I guess must be able to appropriate them within the software ... it must use that as part of the PID control or something - I think I'll make this an answer in case it helps anyone else - thanks – byronyasgur Feb 13 '17 at 17:17
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The Advanced temperature control algorithm of BrewPi uses both environmental and fermentation vessel temperature (multiple sensors). The problem this solves is the air surrounding your fermenting wort will always change quicker than the wort.

Depending on where you put the sensor from a STC-1000 the liquid will either warm/cool more than expected because the controller waits for the correct temperature. The BrewPi will learn and predict how the liquid vs environmental temperature affects each other and shut the cooling/warming off early in order to hit the target temperature closer.

From the landing page: http://www.brewpi.com/

BrewPi has an advanced temperature control algorithm that can keep your beer temperature stable within 0.1 °C. Instead of just heating when the beer is too cold and cooling when the beer is too warm, BrewPi calculates what the fridge temperature should be to keep your beer temperature in check. It then controls the fridge temperature. This prevents fluctuations in the beer temperature.

  • wow thanks - that's pretty much exactly what I was wondering - and double wow for BrewPi very clever - obviously I didn't read their home page properly tut tut me – byronyasgur Feb 14 '17 at 20:18
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    no problem. I haven't had the time to setup brewpi yet, but from what i've read you want to go for the brewpi/andruino package just in case brewpi crashes the andruino will still work as expected separately. – xortion Feb 15 '17 at 21:58
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Brew Pi seems to be intelligent to the uses ( ie positions) of the various sensors ( ie in beer vs in chamber) and so appropriate them within the software, using this as part of the PID control.

( photo courtesy http://www.nationalhomebrewclub.ie/wordpress/2015/03/review-brewpi-fermentation-temperature-controller/ )

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