Advanced Process Modelling Forum – London 20–21 April
Applications "can increase profit by tens or hundreds of millions of Euros"
At the 5th Advanced Process Modelling (APM) Forum in London this week, companies from across the process industries presented on topics ranging from accelerating development of the next generation of drugs to identifying hundreds of millions of Euros in operational savings in natural gas production.
Organised and hosted by PSE, the two-day conference is a key event for process industry organisations focused on creating sustainable value through the application of high-accuracy predictive process modelling and optimisation.
In the sessions on formulated products, aimed at the pharmaceuticals, food & beverage, consumer goods and specialty chemicals sectors, presentations from AstraZeneca, Danone, Eli Lilly, Roche, Saint-Gobain, and Solvay described how new 'digital design' techniques are improving drug product manufacture, including development of robust continuous manufacturing processes, and accelerating time-to-market for new formulations.
A key event was the preview of PSE's forthcoming gPROMS FormulatedProducts environment for integrated design and optimisation of formulated products and their manufacturing processes. Developed in co-operation with specialists from several sectors, this allows scientists and engineers to screen formulations for end-user attributes, determine whether they can be manufactured efficiently, and then use the gPROMS platform's optimisation capabilities to optimise the whole formulation and manufacturing chain.
In the oil & gas, chemicals, petrochemical & refining sessions, where presenters included Bharat Petroleum, BP Exploration, DSM, Primetals, SABIC, SCG Chemicals, Shell, Sulzer, Velocys and Yara International, the focus was on large-scale optimisation applications capable of improving profit by tens or hundreds of millions of Euros. These included major new developments in oilfield optimisation capable of identifying millions of dollars a day in increased production, Shell's work on region-wide optimisation of natural gas processing facilities, Bharat Petroleum's innovative work in real-time optimisation of refinery crude transition, and DSM's operational optimisation of the utility systems supplying electricity and steam to large-scale industrial sites. SABIC described how model-based analysis helped reduce the time to screen anti-coking technologies for ethylene production from years to months.
PSE MD Costas Pantelides said, "A key focus of the conference has been the coming of age of equation-oriented (EO) process modelling tools. EO is a disruptive technology that for the first time makes it possible to optimise large-scale, complex process systems using high-fidelity models and apply techniques such as global system analysis to explore the design and operational space much more rapidly than previously possible. This is enabling companies to realise large gains in competitive advantage and dramatically accelerate innovation".
Keynote speaker Peter Drogt of DSM, standing in for Dorus van der Linden, said that advanced process modelling is crucial technology for the organisation to accelerate innovation and quantify process decisions. A key reason for the company's move to APM is the ability to have a single unified modelling platform across the process lifecycle.
Paul Frey to lead new PSE Oil & Gas Centre of Expertise
Propagating best practice for Pressure Relief, Flare and Blowdown
We are pleased to announce that Paul Frey will head the company's newly established Centre of Expertise (CoE) for Pressure Relief, Flare and Blowdown.
PSE's rigorous, high-fidelity modelling approach has brought new safety best practice to the oil & gas industry in recent years. The company is already the recognised industry-leading provider of high accuracy analysis for blowdown, pressure relief and flare system design, with a worldwide customer base of owner/operators and engineering contractors.
The newly-established Centre of Expertise will comprise an international team of some 20 engineers providing pressure relief, flare and blowdown expertise for front-end engineering design (FEED), detailed design and asset integrity projects to owners/operators and contractors in the oil & gas, petrochemicals and refining industries. High-fidelity dynamic analysis using PSE's extensively-validated gFLARE® modelling environment will continue to be at the core of design and verification studies that help to ensure safe operation, minimise project cost and manage project risk.
Paul has extensive experience in the oil & gas industry, most recently at AMEC Foster Wheeler where he was the Principal Consultant and technical authority in pressure relief and blowdown for Upstream, Midstream and Downstream safety. His role included activities such as technical support and auditing of projects, flare and relief verification audits and responsibility for development of relief sizing methodologies and company standards. He was also a contributor to the API 520 and 521 Pressure Relieving Standards Committee meetings.
James Marriott, VP of PSE's Oil & Gas business, says "we are very pleased to welcome Paul to this key position. We believe that the new CoE shows PSE's commitment to bringing innovative technology and integrating advanced analysis into traditional areas of practice in a way that makes it possible to enhance safety and reduce capital cost at the same time."
PSE is a leading provider of advanced process modelling software and services to the process industries. Its gPROMS family products, built on the gPROMS modelling and optimisation platform, are used to optimise design and operation and accelerate innovation throughout process industry sectors from oil & gas to food and pharmaceuticals.
New £20.4m project set to transform UK pharmaceutical development and manufacturing
gPROMS advanced process modelling used for digital design
We are pleased to announce that PSE is the project leader for a newly-launched major collaborative project that is set to transform the UK pharmaceutical industry.
The ADDoPT (Advanced Digital Design of Pharmaceutical Therapeutics) project is aimed at helping the pharmaceutical industry to get new, innovative medicines to market in the quickest and most cost-effective way. The collaboration will develop and implement advanced 'digital design' techniques that eliminate non-viable drug candidate formulations as early as possible, streamlining design, development and manufacturing processes.
Digital design addresses key challenges for the industry by combining research insight and mechanistic modelling to provide links between raw materials, formulation, manufacturing processes and drug product quality. It spans all operations, processes and procedures during the development and manufacture of medicines and their in vivo application.
ADDoPT draws on the expertise of UK technology and academic leaders in the field of digital design concepts including PSE's expertise in applying model-based techniques to explore the formulation and manufacturing decision space. The company's gPROMS® advanced process modelling platform will be applied to industrial case studies provided by the four major pharmaceutical companies (Pfizer, GSK, AstraZeneca and Bristol-Myers Squibb) within the consortium. A key objective is to achieve better design and scale-up for robust products and processes through more targeted future experimentation and better understanding of risk.
Project Lead Sean Bermingham of Process Systems Enterprise Limited says “by building on UK excellence in process modelling, optimisation and control, we can give UK pharmaceutical development and manufacturing a genuine competitive advantage in this globally significant sector.”
gPROMS ModelBuilder v4.2 now available
Enhancements to flowsheeting, numerical power, usability and physical property handling
We are pleased to announce the release of gPROMS® ModelBuilder® v4.2.
gPROMS ModelBuilder is built on the new gPROMS platform v4.2, which contains many enhancements for flowsheeting users, increases in numerical power, usability enhancements and improvements in physical property handling.
Selected highlights of this release are:
- A new DAE solver, DAEBDF, has been introduced for simulation activities. It offers improved robustness and significantly increased performance for many models.
- The kernel performance has been increased by making the residual and Jacobian evaluation more efficient. This performance improvement can reduce CPU time by up to 30% for certain models at a small cost of slightly increased memory usage.
- The responsiveness of the GUI has been improved, particularly within the opening of large flowsheets, launching of gPROMS activities, consistency checking and live propagation after edit operations.
- The tool for choosing user-friendly names (PMA Chooser) has been extended to cover the graphical editors for schedules and tasks.
- Saved Variable Sets (SVS) can now be more flexibly used for restoring variables that are distributed over ontinuous domains or sets of string names.
- Multiflash has been upgraded to version 4.3.52, and the performance and robustness of the interface have been further improved.
- gSAFT® has been upgraded to v3.1.0 with more methods and components.
More detail is provided in the release notes accessible from the gPROMS ModelBuilder installation. Installers for all supported platforms are available from the customer area.
gPROMS ProcessBuilder is here!
Next-generation flowsheeting for the chemical process industries
Five years since the original design concept, and after three years of development and extensive beta testing by industrial users worldwide, we have just released the first official version of the gPROMS®ProcessBuilder® – arguably the first truly equation-oriented process flowsheeting tool.
It?s been a long journey but this is a big step forward for process modelling technology. For the past 30+ years, the process modelling community has held a simple (and largely justified) consensus view: equation-oriented tools have significant advantages in terms of supporting different types of calculation (e.g. dynamic simulation; both steady-state and dynamic optimisation), efficient handling of tightly integrated processes, ease of custom modelling and so on. But (and this was a big ?but?) equation-oriented technology could not match the general robustness and reliability of steady-state sequential modular software.
Over the last decade at PSE we have worked hard towards addressing this deficiency, with some fundamental R&D breakthroughs and many incremental improvements and enhancements in the gPROMS platform. The release of ProcessBuilder v1.0 is one outcome of these developments. We are looking forward to the feedback from all our users!
gPROMS ModelBuilder v4.1 now available
Enhancements to flowsheeting, numerical power, usability and physical property handling
We are pleased to announce the release of gPROMS ModelBuilder® v4.1.
gPROMS ModelBuilder is built on the new gPROMS platform v4.1, which contains many enhancements for flowsheeting users, increases in numerical power, usability enhancements and improvements in physical property handling.
Selected highlights of this release are:
- The GUI?s responsiveness has been improved and its memory footprint has been reduced significantly. This will become particularly noticeable and useful when working with large model libraries and when many result cases are being kept open in parallel.
- The numerical execution speed for many types of models has been significantly improved while reducing their memory requirements.
- The layout of specification dialogs has been changed to improve their usability when many tabs are present.
- Model Initialisation Procedures now include iterative capabilities, which means, for example, that they can loop until criteria are met. This extends their scope considerably.
- The Units of Measurement metrology database contain more entries, along with other enhancements.
- It is now easier to work with protected libraries, with improvements to diagnostics, case comparison and other features.
- The tools for choosing friendly names have been implemented in more parts of the user interface.
- A new hot start option in optimisation-based activities is particularly useful when restarting interrupted, long-running parameter estimations.
- The licensing structure for PSE's products to accommodate for a broader range of products in the future as well as interoperability between product components. Existing licenses are not affected and end users need not take any action.
- Multiflash has been upgraded to version 4.3.47, and the performance and robustness of the interface have been further improved.
- gSAFT is now available in v2.2.0 with more methods, enhanced theoretical improvements and increased performance.
More detail is provided in the release notes accessible from the gPROMS ModelBuilder installation, with many more enhancements described in the installed documentation.
Installers for all supported platforms are available from the customer area of the PSE web site.
PSE's gCOAS heralds breakthrough in computational oral absorption analysis
Formulation scientists can "bring new and better drugs to market earlier"
PSE today announced its new gCOAS® product for computational oral absorption at the Drug Development and Formulation Summit in Düsseldorf.
gCOAS, co-developed within the Systems-based Pharmaceutics (SbP) Alliance, is an analysis tool for a priori prediction of drug absorption in the human intestine as a function of product formulation parameters and ingestion conditions.
It provides formulation scientists with a tool that allows them to easily and quickly screen the performance of new formulations. The ultimate objective is to design a good dosage form in terms of amount of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API), particle size distribution of the API crystals, and other relevant attributes.
gCOAS aims to give unprecedented confidence in the accuracy of predictions of fractions absorbed using basic compound data, allowing more comprehensive early stage screening of promising candidate molecules and enabling the design of better formulations throughout the development lifecycle. These improved formulations reduce the risk to healthy volunteers and patients, as well as help reduce the number of trials, making it possible to bring new and better drugs to market earlier.
gCOAS is a key component of PSE?s Systems-based Pharmaceutics vision, in which the formulation and manufacturing decisions are based on their effect on the efficacy of the drug. The ultimate goal of SbP is to identify the drug formulation that gives you the desired bioavailability while satisfying manufacturing constraints such as flowability and content uniformity as early as possible in the development cycle.
Richard Longdon appointed chairman of PSE
AVEVA CEO joins board of rapidly-growing UK high-tech supplier to process industries
We are pleased to announce that Richard Longdon, CEO of AVEVA Group plc (www.aveva.com; LSE: AVV.L), the global provider of engineering software to the process industries, has been appointed as non-executive chairman of PSE. He succeeds outgoing Chairman Keith Guy, who is stepping down after more than 13 years in the position.
Richard joined AVEVA in 1984. He was part of the management buyout team in 1994, with responsibility for worldwide sales and marketing activities at the company's London Stock Exchange listing in 1996 and was appointed Group Chief Executive in 1999. Since then, he has overseen substantial growth of the company via a number of strategic acquisitions that have given AVEVA a consistent track record of growing revenues and profits over the long term.
Costas Pantelides, MD of PSE, says "We are immensely grateful for Keith's Guy's contribution to PSE since 2001. He has overseen the growth of the company from a small spin-out to the substantial and respected international organisation that it is today".
He adds "Richard Longdon brings in a wealth of experience and expertise in managing and delivering growth in an international technology company, which will be invaluable in taking PSE through the next stages of its development."
Richard Longdon says "I am very excited to be joining a company of the pedigree and reputation of PSE. The company and its products are already transforming the way the process industries around the world design and operate, and I look forward to playing my part in continuing and accelerating that success."
PSE's gPROMS advanced process modelling technology is widely used throughout the chemicals, energy, petrochemical, food and pharmaceuticals sectors to explore the process decision space rapidly and effectively and make better, faster and safer design and operating decisions. The company's expanding global customer base of Fortune 500 process industry companies is served by operations in the UK, USA, Switzerland, Japan and Korea, and agency relationships in key developing economies.