8 Benefits of Implementing an Automated Process Control System with Innopharma Technology

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Never before has the world seen such great progress in digital technology and the life sciences field. 

We are at the forefront of the greatest innovations, systems, and processes that are developing incredible products for our communities. 

But with this progress, many companies in the life sciences and pharmaceutical industries are seeing growth pains. 

Finding ways to automate and make a more efficient production system can feel overwhelming. After all, doing so opens the door for more risk of things going wrong. 

That’s where Innopharma can help with our automated process control system. Keep reading to better understand where we can fit into your current process: 

What Is an Automated Process Control System?

First, before we get further into Innopharma’s process control system, let’s discuss what an automated process control system is. 

An automated process control system fits under the broader process analytical technology umbrella. This is an advanced form of technology that integrates into a current production process. When it does, it automates a large portion of the process, including processing, analysing, and converting information, offering software and algorithmic support, and even monitoring the production process to ensure quality assurance.

Ultimately, the integration of an automation system aids personnel and process analytical technicians in the overall production process.


How Is a Process Control System Used in the Production Process?

A process control system is used in many production processes to supervise and automatically control the process to give the desired product. 

Overall, the main goal of a process automation system is often used to create a more streamlined production process, reduce maintenance costs of production, and develop a more consistent product. 

An advanced manufacturing automation system can do this in a variety of ways. For most, it involves collecting and analysing real-time data, before sending information to a technician. Sometimes, the technician then manually controls the process from that point. Other times, the automated process control unit adjusts the process itself. 


Eyecon2 and SmartX In-line

Innopharma Technology’s Low Code / No Code Automation Process Systems

When process control systems were first introduced, it took a lot of technical knowledge and experience for technicians to effectively integrate them into the overall production process. 

However, as digital technology has progressed toward Industry 4.0 and Industry 5.0, these advanced automation systems have developed, too. 

While knowledge and experience of how to use these systems are necessary, it’s not nearly as difficult as it used to be. Through more advanced user interfaces, process analytical technicians have easier access to these powerful tools. 

For example, Innopharma Technology’s SmartX process automation system uses a low code (down to no code) interface. This means technicians don’t need to be fluent in code to operate this tool, making it much more accessible for companies across all of the life sciences and pharmaceutical industries.


Benefits of Implementing an Automation Process Control System with Innopharma Technology:

The main benefits of implementing an Innopharma Technology automation process control system can be broken down into three sections: technical benefits, financial benefits, and community benefits. 


Technical Benefits: 

The technical benefits of an Innopharma Technology automation system refer to the user interface and how it can integrate with an established production process. 

Low Code / No Code:

Innopharma Technology’s SmartX automated process control system includes a low code (or no code) user interface. This makes using it much easier than other automation systems, as we’ve removed coding as a barrier to entry. 

With easy-to-use drag-and-drop dashboards, allow for intuitive interfaces so technicians can monitor the automated process. If necessary, technicians can also manually control the running of a process directly from these dashboards. 

Data Universally Accessible

In addition to the easy-to-use dashboards, the data collected, analysed, and stored by the system is also easily accessible. With a cloud-based application, technicians have access to real-time and stored data at a moment’s notice. 

Further, technicians can use this cloud-based library to search for process-specific control functions, rather than relying on remembering specific codes. 

Cross-Platform Digitisation and Automation

SmartX is not made for one single production process. Instead, it’s capable of integrating across multiple platforms to aid in digitisation and automation. 

With data analytics tools and retrofitting capabilities, the system can communicate across platforms including all sensors, PAT, and device communications. This opens the door for technicians to receive all production data, instead of relying on previously siloed data. 

Plus, with the retrofitting capabilities, SmartX is designed to coexist alongside previously working production systems. 


Financial Benefits:

The financial benefits of an Innopharma Technology automated process control system refer to the costs associated with implementing an automated system into an existing production process. 

Reduction in Project Risk

Implementing process automation tools into manufacturing also reduces project risk. These tools, such as Innopharma Technology’s SmartX, are designed to streamline the manufacturing process to produce consistent, effective results. 

Because they are automated, the risk of human-made errors that can stem from working long hours, not getting enough sleep, or simply having a lapse in judgement, is reduced.  

Reduction in Manufacturing Costs

Considering these advanced automation systems fall under the umbrella of process analytical technology, the two share common financial benefits.  

While there is an upfront cost associated with integrating an automated process control system into a current production process, the result is a reduction in manufacturing costs. 

Automating the production process, or at least the majority of it reduces the risk of human error. In doing so, technicians no longer have to restart the manufacturing process again, which results in costly raw materials and energy consumption. 


Community Benefits:

Finally, the third category of benefits involves community-driven benefits. This refers to both the community of personnel operating the production process and the community that benefits from the result.

Real-Time Data Driven

One of the best benefits for process analytical technicians working with Innopharma Technology systems is the real-time data they receive. 

They are quickly up-to-date with all information happening within the production process. This allows them to make manual adjustments as needed to continue producing the quality product. 

The real-time data also allows technicians to analyse portions of the process that need improvement. 

Integration Into Productions, Regardless of Scale

While many may believe that their production process is too small, and therefore can’t use an automated process, that’s not the case with Innopharma Technology. 

Our automated process control systems are scalable, with options to connect to multiple systems. Plus, they’re able to work alongside existing systems, regardless of how large or small the manufacturing process is. 

Higher Quality Products

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the result for the consumer market is nothing short of high quality. 

With a streamlined approach that reduces the risk of human error and drives down manufacturing costs, the result is a consistent high-quality product for your community that relies on your products. 


How Can Innopharma Technology Help:

Ultimately, implementing an automated process control system is one of the best investments your manufacturing company can make. With a streamlined approach that relies on real-time data for your technicians and an easy-to-use interface, these automation systems can quickly make a difference in the overall manufacturing process. 

With Innopharma Technology’s SmartX Process Automation Platform, we can help pharmaceutical companies like yours reduce costs and improve the quality and efficiency of your products. 

Discover more about our SmartX Advanced Process Automation Platform or get in touch with our team and learn how it can help improve your production processes today!

Chris O’Callaghan

Chris O’Callaghan is Head of Engineering within Innopharma Technology and is responsible for process analytical technologies and control products, applications development, and customer project delivery. He and his team manage the custom engineering projects required to successfully interface control systems with new and existing product lines in the continuous and batch manufacturing spaces, as well as control strategy development and deployment.

Caroline McCormack

Caroline McCormack is a Process Scientist working at Innopharma Technology and supports a number of ongoing R&D projects. She is responsible for experimentation around our process analytical technologies and advanced process control techniques currently in development, across the batch and continuous oral solid dose manufacturing space.

Pharma 4.0

SmartX provides process operation-specific control and connectivity, without the need for extensive customisation. The highly adaptable Data Broker module allows connection to a vast range of sensor technologies, MES and data historians.

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