Process Monitoring and Control Technologies Optimize Operations

Published on: 
BioPharm International, BioPharm International-01-01-2018, Volume 31, Issue 1
Pages: 46-47

New technological advancements seek to improve pharmaceutical process monitoring and control.

Over the past several months, manufacturers have introduced and updated products to improve process monitoring and control technologies. Some of these technologies include advances in enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for batch process manufacturing and data loggers for remote monitoring, as well as analytical software, integrated network infrastructure, and control room network solutions. The following is a sampling of such products.

ERP software for batch process manufacturing

ProcessPro Global is an enterprise resource planning software solution for batch process manufacturing (1). The system offers full manufacturing, inventory, and financial integration and uses Microsoft -service-oriented architecture technologies, including NET and SQL Server. Standard manufacturing, inventory, quality, financial, and sales functions are supplemented with the following features: warehouse management, compliance point of sale, direct store delivery, maintenance and repair, field service, fixed assets, project accounting, payroll, human resources, electronic data interchange, and others. 

The solution is available for use in a range of languages, currencies, companies, and industries. According to the company, the software’s functional capabilities can be used across multiple industries and countries.

Analytical software solution for manufacturing process data

Sartorius Stedim Biotech’s subsidiary, Sartorius Stedim Data Analytics, has added the Active Dashboard 2 to its analytical software solution offerings (2). The system provides data visualization for applications in pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical manufacturing, and real-time process information from multivariate SIMCA-online data analysis systems. 

Features include improved data visualization options, including self-service visual analytics with cross-filtering to reduce the involvement of data analysis experts; role-based display of relevant information; and the ability to connect to other data sources. Additionally, management and other authorized employees can visualize process information on any laptop, tablet, or smartphone with a web browser.

Integrated network infrastructure solution


The Infrastructure-as-a-Service from Rockwell Automation combines pre-engineered network solutions, on-site configuration, and 24/7 remote-monitoring support into one contract (3). 

The service is offered with pre-engineered network solutions from the company, including the Industrial Data Center (IDC) and the Industrial Network Distribution Solution (INDS). The IDC provides the hardware and software needed to transition to a virtualized environment, and is suited to deliver availability and fault tolerance. The INDS is a network distribution package that helps end users achieve secure, high-capacity connectivity between the control room and throughout the plant floor, according to the company. These solutions incorporate technologies from Cisco, Panduit, and Microsoft.

Under the service contract, the company will size, assemble, and test the infrastructure, including configuration and on-site deployment at the serviced facility. Contracts include 24/7 remote monitoring of critical system parameters to help prevent outages and failures, as well as proactive system maintenance and inspections. 


Upgraded control room network

The Experion Local Control Network (LCN) solution from Honeywell Process Solutions provides a streamlined control system infrastructure with standards-based functionality, regulatory support capabilities, and integrated plant operations (4). The solution, which is an upgrade from the company’s original TotalPlant Solution (TPS) control system, enables deployment of the Industrial Internet of Things. Existing control strategies, field terminations, applications, history, and graphics can be retained after installing the upgraded system, according to the company.

Using the company’s Experion Fault Tolerant Ethernet (FTE) infrastructure, the LCN bridge connects Experion to Classic Coax LCN. Once this connection is established, the LCN coax connection can be removed one node at a time. Instead of a hardware connection for each Experion TPS node, only one Experion LCN bridge pair is needed to enable virtualization.

Additionally, the control system can have a common human machine interface and unified physical control network, enabling control devices to integrate with the latest generation of the brand’s automated controllers and safety systems. 

Data loggers for remote monitoring

Digi-Sense data loggers from Cole-Parmer are suited for the remote monitoring of critical environments (5). The products are equipped with the company’s subscription-based TraceableLIVE wireless technology, which connects to data via WiFi on a smartphone, tablet, or personal computer. The cloud-based interface allows workers to view conditions in real-time; set alarm parameters; view data logging history; generate data reports in real time; receive email, text, and push notifications; and receive alerts for temperature alarm, connectivity interruption, and low battery warning.

The devices come in four models that include NIST [National Institute of Standards and Technologies]-traceable calibration for measurement reliability. The Temperature/Humidity model has a range of 32-131 °F (0-55 °C) while the Ultra-Low Temperature model measures down to -130 °F (-90 °C). The Multiparameter model measures temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, or barometric pressure levels, and the Refrigerator/Freezer Thermometers include a choice of four different temperature probe styles. 


1. ProcessPro, “ProcessPro Announces New ERP Software Solution,” Press Release, Sept. 25, 2017.
2. Sartorius Stedim Biotech, “Active Dashboard 2 Allows Easy Access to Process Performance Data,” Press Release, July 13, 2017.  
3. Rockwell Automation, “Infrastructure-as-a-Service Simplifies and Accelerates Network Deployments,” Press Release, Oct. 19, 2017. 
4. Honeywell Process Solutions, “Honeywell Introduces New Way for Industrial Customers to Modernize Their Control Rooms,” Press Release, Sept. 26, 2017.
5. Cole-Parmer, “Digi-Sense Products from Cole-Parmer Available with TraceableLIVE Wireless Technology,” Press Release, August 16, 2017.

Article Details

BioPharm International
Vol. 31, No. 1
January 2018
Pages: 46-47


When referring to this article, please cite it as A. Lowry, " Process Monitoring and Control Technologies Optimize Operations," BioPharm International 31 (1) 2018.