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Engineering Assignment: Literature Review On Removing Alcohol From Wine


Task: TASK
The alcohol concentration in wine can be reduced either by a small amount to achieve a more balanced wine or to meet the market demand for a wine with a significantly lower alcohol content.
The engineering assignment task requires you to prepare a literature review addressing the alcohol removal technologies available for use in the wine industry. The specific requirements are to: Introduce the types and combinations of processes that can be used for dealcoholisation of wine. Briefly describe the physical and mechanical principles that govern the operation and performance of each process, using diagrams to support your answers.

Discuss the potential benefits and possible drawbacks or challenges to employing each of the possible technologies or combinations thereof. For example, this may involve identifying and weighing benefits in terms of logistics, process or energy efficiencies against possible adverse impacts on wine quality and investment costs, etc.
The technologies outlined in the below article

This assessment task will assess the following learning outcome/s:

Be able to describe, evaluate and compare the use of selected procedures or technologies against economic, logistic and product quality constraints

You will need to draw widely from (and appropriately reference) both scientific literature (e.g. American Journal of Enology and Viticulture, Journal of Membrane Science, etc.) and trade publications (e.g. Australian and New Zealand Grapegrower and Winemaker, Wine Business Monthly, etc.). You must include in-text citations following a standard and accepted referncing system (APA preferred). To find appropriate articles you should search using specialised databases (e.g. VITIS-VEA, Scopus or Web of Science) (refer to: or Google Scholar (, accessed via the Library. Where appropriate, you should support your discussion and analysis with figures or tables (but be sure to completely and correctly acknowledge the source of these).


Background Of Engineering Assignment
Wine is one of the most desired and loved drinks in the world. In terms of beverages,wines are loved by most of the people and are considered as healthy for the human body. Due to high presence of alcohol the people, regarding health awareness and concern do not mostly take the wine. The research discusses the concept of reducing alcohol concentration from wine. The research discusses the technologies that are used in separating the alcohol from the wine and the various other processes that is involved in alcohol separation from wine. The research also discusses the benefits and limitations of technologies used in separation of alcohols from wine. ?

Literature review
Concept of reducing alcohol concentration from wine

According to Amerine, (2019), wine has always become a prestigious and popular in beverages in the human evolution from thousands of years. The wine is used as an essential drink in various cultures and traditions and in religions as well. As the wine is used in various cultures it has also created a various disadvantages by the excess consumption and also has lead a person to death as well. The wine produced by the fermentation of grapes extracts strong concentration of alcohol and this high concentration is not beneficial for the human body. Amerine, (2019), also states that that many people likes the aroma of wine and also wants to taste the flavor of wine for enjoyment but due to high presence of alcohol concentration they could not enjoy the taste of wine. In the ancient times, the consumption of wine was used as a part of medicine for getting relaxed from their daily hard work. In the year 1975, the first non- alcoholic wine was produced by the U.S and the main motive of producing the alcohol free wine was to use those beverages in the churches. Gardner, (2016), in his studies states that the wine that is produced from the fermentation of grapes is widely used in the churches for religious purposes and use of alcohol contained wine may violate the religious ethics of church. The alcohol removal from wine removes its real flavor and aroma and people may not find it enjoying and relaxing by taking wine anymore. The presence of alcohol in wine plays a significant role as it helps in preserving and maintaining its aroma and flavor and mostly the color of wine as well.

Types and combinations of processes involved in dealcoholisation of wine
Alcohol removal technologies have been widely used in the current era for various health benefits purposes. The two main components that are present in wine are water over 80% and 9% ethanol that make it more flavorsome.The process of removing alcohol and producing alcohol reduced wine is been done from more than 20 years. The technologies used in removing alcohol from wine are called the membrane technologies that are widely used in the alcohol industry. In membrane technology there are various process that is used in alcohol separation from wine and the process are done without using any chemicals (Cunningham et al., 2011). The composite membrane, membrane module, zeolite membrane, membrane distillation and conventional distillation are the few procedures that have to go through for alcohol removal from wine. The reverse osmosis process is also used in the separation of alcohol from wine, it is an old process and takes long time to prepare alcohol free wine. However, the process is old but it is still used in some industries. The distillation process is also one of the oldest processes to separate alcohol from wine and is widely used in the laboratory. The process is simple but it takes time to collect the alcohol and measure the alcohol concentration after the separation.

Physical and mechanical principles that govern the operation and performance
In alcohol removal from wine,various processes and proceduresare used in membrane technology. The evaporative pertraction process also known as the EP is used in the membrane technology as this consumes low energy and time than reverse osmosis and spinning cone column technology. From this process, the production of alcohol free wine is produced more in less duration and can be done in room temperature and atmospheric pressure (Liguori & Matteo, 2018). The scale pilot plant which is a stainless steel frame, a rotary kobe pump for the wine and the vacuum pump for the gas, seat and butterfly valves are used in this process for the removal of the alcohol from the wine. The wine is put in a membrane contractor machine that consists hollow fibre membrane that is micro porous and hydrophobic that allows the non-dispersive contact between the two phases(Jakab et al., 2013). From the membrane contractor machine the wine is passed through the hydrophobic chamber to the second phase which is also called the striping phase. In the second or stripping phase the water flows to other side or room of the membrane or to the hollow fibre contractor machine. Due to the partial pressure differences in between the two phases it creates a driving force and the transfer or extraction of alcohol is done easily. Working under the same pressure and room temperature the aroma and the flavor of the wine is decreased or lost by 20%. Therefore, the EP process is used in the industries to extract the alcohol from the wine and the process is easy and fast(Ozturk & Anli, 2014).


Figure1: Evaporative Pertraction
(Source: Ozturk & Anli, 2014)

The other process that used in removal of alcohol from the wine is the reverse osmosis. The reverse osmosis process is also the membrane technology that used in the industrial areas. In this process the two streams or extraction could be obtained one is permeate of water containing ethanol and the other is alcohol free wine(Mermelstein, 2000). The nano filtration process is used in this process to extract alcohol from wine in higher amount.However, in this process the wine is mildly heated before putting or entering in the membrane machine at a temperature of 15 degree approximately for the wine storage temperature to 22-25 degree for the alcohol or ethanol flux. As in this process or technology the two products is extracted i.e. water and alcohol with a operation pressure of 60-80 bars and therefore, it makes essential to add some water in the extracted alcohol free wine after the filtration(Mermelstein, 2000). In European countries the addition of water in the extracted wine is strictly not allowed and therefore, to overcome the situation or the regulation the diffuse water of the wine is separated from the alcohol and is added back to the wine to preserve its aroma and the flavor.


Figure2: Reverse osmosis process
(Source: Mermelstein, 2000)

Potential benefits and possible drawbacks or challenges to employing each of the possible technologies
There are a few benefits and limitations in dealcoholisation process such as
In evaporative pertraction the energy demand is less than in reverse process as it can be done in room pressure and temperature. The alcohol extraction from wine is likely to get more in less duration and it does not consume more time. In the reverse osmosis process, the alcohol extraction is high and the wine prepared from this process is pure and has a natural aroma and flavor. To preserve the aroma and its real flavor no extra chemicals and edibles are added. By using these technologies industries could satisfy or fulfill the demand of the wine in the market and this also helps to increase the revenue as well (Liguori et al., 2019). As wine is also used for religious purposes and alcohol-free wine could be used in churches without any religious ethics violation. As the industries are fully dependent on the technological equipment for the alcohol extraction from wine and therefore, if there arise any technical issues then the production and supply of alcohol-free wine gets delayed or paused (Liguori et al., 2019). In these technologies, the concentration of alcohol need to be measured and if there are any mistakes then the aroma of the wine may get violated or lost.

Wine has always been one of the most valuable products that is used in terms of beverages. The wine is famous for its aroma and flavor it holds and is used for the cultural and various religious purposes. The separation of alcohol from the wine was very tough in previous times and due to the high concentration of alcohol presence in wine most of the people who liked to taste and drink flavors were not able. The separation process of alcohol from the wine has increased the demand and supply of wine as this could be drink and used in cultural and religious places. The membrane separation technology is used for the separation of the alcohol from the wine as this consumes less time and effort. The research enables to know the new technologies that could be used to separate the alcohol from wine. The reverse osmosis process is also used to separate the alcohol from the wine.

Amerine, M. (2019). wine | Definition, History, Varieties, & Facts | Britannica. In Encyclopædia Britannica.
Cunningham, J. A., Kypri, K., & McCambridge, J. (2011). The Use of Emerging Technologies in Alcohol Treatment. Alcohol Research & Health, 33(4), 320–326.
Gardner, D. M. (2016). An Examination of Distillation of Faulted Wines. Penn State Extension.
Jakab, H., Delrot, F. -, Stoll, M., Zamora, G.-P., Dequin, S., Bely, M., Bauer, F.-P., Africa, S., Ruf, J.-C., Schmidtke, L., Gonçalves, F., Stassi, A., Ferrarini, I.-P., Lisanti, T., Wilkinson, K., & Meillon, S. (2013). Alcohol level reduction in wine.
Liguori, L., & Matteo, M. D. (2018). Dealcoholization - an overview | ScienceDirect Topics.
Liguori, L., Albanese, D., Crescitelli, A., Di Matteo, M., & Russo, P. (2019). Impact of dealcoholization on quality properties in white wine at various alcohol content levels. Journal of Food Science and Technology, 56(8), 3707–3720.
Mermelstein, N. H. (2000). Removing Alcohol from Wine.

Ozturk, B., & Anli, E. (2014). Different techniques for reducing alcohol levels in wine: A review. Engineering assignmentBIO Web of Conferences, 3(1051), 02012. Schmitt, M., & Christmann, M. (2019). Alcohol Reduction by Physical Methods. In IntechOpen.


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