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Thursday 29 September 2016

Airline solves how to serve draught beer at 35,000 feet on time for Rio's Olympics

Geraldine Gittens

Published 18/07/2016 | 14:03

The question of how you might be able to serve draught beer high in the sky has always presented airlines with a scientific conundrum.

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How is it possible to get the beer out of the keg when you’re that high up in a pressurized environment.

Dutch airline KLM and Dutch brewer Heineken think they’ve found a way, and are planning to serve beer on flights to Rio during the Olympics next month.

“Because the air pressure is so much lower in an airplane than at sea level, a traditional beer tap will not work as it will only dispense a huge amount of foam,” Heineken’s Edwin Griffioen explained. “We do have dispensers that work on air pressure, but these were too big to fit in a plane.”

“It was one big jigsaw puzzle,” he said, “as the keg of beer, the cooling system and the air pressure compressor all had to fit in an airline catering trolley."

Heineken have come up with a solution, with one small caveat.

"In the end we had to leave out one of those pieces to make it all fit, so with pain in our hearts we had to leave the cooling behind.”

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