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Materials and Lot ID Traceability

In the event of a recall can you find everything you need to know in an expeditious way.

As per Wikipedia, “Traceability” is the capability to trace something. In some cases, it is interpreted as the ability to verify the history, location, or application of an item by means of documented recorded identification.

In the process industry, we are required to know the whereabouts of the raw and intermediate materials as well as the finished products. This is paramount since recalls can be impactful to the safety of the consumer as well as financially to the producers.

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Read More | Posted In: Bakery Industry, Batch Boosters, Beverage Industry, Chemical Industry, Distilleries, Food Industry, Life Science Industry, White Papers

Automated Procedures for Manual Processes

Process customers do not need to automate their equipment to start taking advantage of some of the important benefits that off-the-shelf automation products possess. Processes that are typically operated manually can benefit from automating their procedural execution, meaning that the activities that operator typically perform by following printed Standard Operating Procedures can be Specified, Enforced, and Verified in electronic form.

Off-the-shelf products allow us to Specify recipes that can span multiple unit procedures.  These can be enforced by prompting the operator or operators of the different areas to perform the required manual activities in the order specified, information normally captured on a sheet of paper or batch log can be annotated and journaled electronically and then this information can be instantly used to make decisions on the active recipe (i.e. adjust the amount of material to be added based on a sample analysis).

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Read More | Posted In: Bakery Industry, Batch Boosters, Beverage Industry, Chemical Industry, Distilleries, Food Industry, Life Science Industry, Metals, White Papers

Weighing In Dispensing System

Manual weighing and dispensing tracked electronically.

Automating the dosing of Minor and Micro ingredients is often cost-prohibitive. These tasks are often performed manually by operators that weigh the required materials then dose them to the required destination at the appropriate time. These procedures are typically guided by Paper Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) that are used to track progress and capture required information manually.

These activities can be conducive to errors that are captured downstream after additional value has been added to the raw materials, some of these errors cause batches to be reprocessed or rejected.

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Read More | Posted In: Bakery Industry, Batch Boosters, Beverage Industry, Chemical Industry, Distilleries, Food Industry, Life Science Industry, White Papers

Material Storage Management

Automation Simplified

Managing the reception of materials and its distribution throughout all the storage locations can be a daunting task. Automating this with off-the-shelf products simplifies tremendously the implementation of such a solution. Factory Talk Batch has a component called Material Manager that enables such implementation.

This solution seamlessly integrates the reception of materials into the Plant with the production process. Setting up this solution consist of defining the materials capabilities in Factory Talk Batch. These capabilities are defined by containers, or locations where material can reside, possible materials that can exist in the plant and the possible means of moving material from a source to a destination called Phases.

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Read More | Posted In: Bakery Industry, Batch Boosters, Beverage Industry, Chemical Industry, Distilleries, FactoryTalk Batch, Food Industry, Life Science Industry, White Papers

Reduce the execution and validation effort by standardizing

We can greatly benefit from understanding what others have done, standards encapsulate the current best approach as seen by an individual or team. For end-users, these automation standards can be defined by associations and range from homegrown to corporate-driven.

The International Society of Automation (ISA) is well established by providing best practices from expert experiences and can be used to avoid starting each project from the ground up. These standards provide a reference point for communication between all team members and can be used to clearly define expectations.

As automation professionals, we find it interesting how these standards are not fully understood. Systems are implemented by individuals that do not fully understand these standards, yet think they do. Their implementations fall short of the system’s potential and the end-user ends up with a sub-optimal system. It is like listening to a kid tell the world that he knows how to ride a bicycle, and in his mind, he does. We all understand things to different degrees, just as the kid, we see the same in the implementation of batch projects. Some end-users and system integrators truly have a grasp on these standards, others learn about them for the first time during the implementation of an ongoing project which is not optimal.

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Read More | Posted In: Batch Boosters, Chemical Industry, Life Science Industry, White Papers

Leveraging ISA-88 Standards for Discrete Manufacturing

Tracking manual discrete manufacturing processes can greatly benefit from off-the-shelf products.

Often, discrete manufacturing processes requiring a high level of manual operator activities that rely on paper-based Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) to specify how to manufacture their products.

Operators are responsible to perform the tasks as specified by the SOP as well as capturing the required data when requested. It is not uncommon to find plants that have automated components of the manufacturing process but require the operators to input the setpoints before initiating the required tasks. These operators are also responsible for capturing the required data and writing it on the SOPs, some of these SOP steps require capturing a date stamp as well as information of the person that performed a task or captured the data.  Some customers require tracking these activities with more reliability and would like to capture information with much greater granularity.

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Read More | Posted In: Bakery Industry, Batch Boosters, Chemical Industry, Distilleries, Food Industry, Life Science Industry, Metals, White Papers

Recipe version control and released to production functionality

You may already have it — Recipe Life Cycle Management— and don’t know it. Recipe procedures encapsulate the best practices in performing your processing tasks, but are you sure that what is being produced is what everyone agreed to produce?

  • Who edited it?
  • Where is the correct version?
  • Who approved the recipe to be released?

In practice, recipe version control and released to production functionality in plants range from great to sometimes not at all. This can also be true for people using Factory Talk Batch. (more…)

Read More | Posted In: Bakery Industry, Batch Boosters, Beverage Industry, Chemical Industry, Distilleries, Food Industry, Life Science Industry, White Papers