EMS and Bosch establish strategic cooperation to implement the first Industry 4.0 in the pharmaceutical sector – Latin America

EMS, the largest pharmaceutical laboratory in Brazil, joins Bosch to leverage the Industry 4.0 in its manufacturing units in the country. The implementation of connected machines aims to make the production of the laboratory smarter and more efficient, bringing significant growth in the company’s productive capacity in the next 3 to 5 years. The contract between the companies was signed on May 29, 2018.

EMS is the first laboratory in the pharmaceutical sector in Latin America to acquire solutions from the Industry 4.0. The implementation will initially take place through a pilot project in a packaging line and in the process of maintenance management. The expansion of this technology to other lines and facilities, as well as to the production processes, from the primary material to the final product, is focused as the next step of the cooperation. At that first moment, Bosch developed a specific software for the pharmaceutical industry, called Bosch Pharma i 4.0 Solution Platform, a Manufacturing Execution System (MES). The program will be installed on the existing machines from EMS factory located in Hortolândia, turning into more connected equipment, following the concept of “smart factories”. In addition, all maintenance tasks will be computerized, allowing the registration of services executed in real time, as well as providing greater speed and assertiveness in the analysis of the causes of failures and solution of problems. In Industry 4.0, systems monitor physical processes, create virtual replication, and make decentralized decisions based on data raised by computers, which make it possible to troubleshoot error causes more quickly, and to ensure more consistent product quality. With the Bosch tool, you can analyze and store a lot of information at the same time, dynamically, quickly and efficiently.

“Bosch’s Industry 4.0 solutions have been tailored to the special requirements of EMS, providing transparency for all process and machine data, in order to help the company to maintain a high performance of their equipment and make real-time decisions based on hard facts,” explains Volker Melges, director of the Pharma Division Robert Bosch Latin America. “Apart from individual machines, the Bosch Pharma i 4.0 Solution Platform can also monitor several lines simultaneously, and provides an important basis for optimum productivity. To do so, the system records information from various production units and stores it centrally. To accurately transfer data, Pharma i 4.0 Solution Platform is calibrated for the use with Bosch machines. However, with a suitable electronic interface, the solution can also be used with third-party production equipment”, says Melges.

At first, a pilot project will carried out – for testing and identification of improvement points – in one of the fourteen automated lines, located in the solid medicine packaging unit, which operates in the modern EMS manufacturing complex in Hortolândia. The pilot project installations will start in June 2018, with full delivery, planned for the end of the year.

“The main idea is to improve and keep moving forward this new system, and in the future all of our industry can optimize their resources more and more, producing smarter and efficiently,” says Tobias Henzel, vice president of EMS operations.

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