Today in 1980, US Patent 1087120 A1 was issued, an invention of Walter T. Nagodawithana and Janet M. Cuzner, assigned to the Jos. Schlitz Brewing Company, for their “Method of Fermenting.” Here’s the Abstract:
A method of fermenting a fermentable substrate, such as brewer’s wort. The substrate, having a high concentration of fermentable carbohydrate which would normally ferment very slowly or incompletely, is fermented by utilizing water dilution at a process point in the fermentation. The dilution is effected after the initial foam head produced in the fermentation collapses so that the headspace of the fermenting vessel normally allocated for the foam can be used for the fermentation of the diluted substrate. The water dilution reduces the osmotic pressure and ethanol concentration in the substrate, thus allowing the fermentation to proceed without inhibition by the combined effect of the two factors. The reduced osmotic pressure also increases the ethanol gradient between the inside and the outside of the yeast cells to enable the fermentation to proceed to completion.