Cane sugar processing

Cane sugar is grown in tropical areas of the globe where it can be profitably produced. After harvesting, the sugar cane must be processed within 24 hours to avoid sugar loss by inversion of sucrose to glucose and fructose.

Sucrose is extracted from the sugar cane stalk in a cane sugar mill, purified, and crystallized into a tan-colored raw sugar. In a cane sugar refinery, the raw sugar is re-melted, and the sucrose is further decolorized and crystallized.

Cane sugar processing

Download the application note to learn how Vaisala Polaris Process Refractometer is used throughout the processing for optimization and to ensure efficiently working subprocesses and cane sugar mill and refinery.


  • The process refractometer can be used to improve control in all the phases during milling, including preparation and extraction, heating, sulfidation and clarification, evaporation, crystallization as well as in centrifuge and drying.


  • In the affination process, the process refractometer provides real-time the concentration of the liquor to clarification.
  • During decolorization, the process refractometer provides wash control for the sweet water washing line and accurate and instant detection of the interface between sweet water and syrup.
  • Process refractometer can be used during evaporation for continuous measurement of juice concentration and feed-forward control.
  • During crystallization, the process refractometer is paired with Zutora's SeedMaster SM-4, which allows for accurate, in-line, and real-time monitoring of supersaturation and crystal content over the complete process of crystallization.
  • During the recovery step, the process refractometer monitors the final molasses concentration, controls dilatation and molasses separation, as well as the wastewater line.

The note also includes recommended Vaisala Polaris Process Refractometer installation points for the best performance.

Download our application note in PDF by filling out the form.

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