Looking for a weighing solution for multiple filling systems, Bayer Schering Pharma AG approached METTLER TOLEDO. At their plant in Bergkamen, Germany, they need to fill small containers (20−50 kg) with active pharmaceutical ingredients (API’s) from large storage tanks. The solution delivered allowed them to accurately and reliably fill these containers directly from their existing programmable logic controller (PLC) system.
The storage tanks are sent to the production lines for processing. The key requirements were that the weighing technology could be integrated seamlessly into a PLC-controlled filling system and that weighing, product and batch data could be transferred to the existing goods management system for inventory management. The weighing technology also had to be suitable for use in clean rooms – for example stainless steel housing, and easy to clean.
PC with weighing function
Bayer Schering opted for the weighing solution based on the METTLER TOLEDO ID30 PC and a high-resolution balance from the K-series. The robust ID30 PC has a dedicated weighing processor, which supplies weight values in real-time irrespective of the CPU usage of the Windows XP Professional OS. Time-critical control processes, such as metering and filling processes, are therefore no problem for the ID30.
Virtually limitless potential
With the Windows XP Professional OS and Microsoft ActiveX technology, the ID30 offers a huge potential for software development and special weighing solutions – in fact the ID30 is capable of almost everything conceivable on a PC. The sum of all these properties was ultimately the key factor for Bayer Schering Pharma in reaching their decision.
Full system integration
ID30 unites the advantages of both weighing and PC technology. Bayer Schering Pharma makes the most of this by installing a special filling software for controlling and visualizing the filling system.
Data and control signals are exchanged between the ID30 and a PLC via Ethernet and Profibus® DP. And the connection of the ID30 to the goods management system also allows all process-relevant information such as order, batch and article data to be displayed. Barcode scanners and label printers ensure error-free data acquisition and labeling of the filled containers. In the meantime, seven filling systems have been successfully commissioned with ID30 technology in Bergkamen. Plant engineer Hans Raddatz, sees important advantages not only in the pioneering visualization technology, but also in the flexible PC structure offered by the ID30: “Adjustments and further developments to the filling systems can be made at any time and are easy to implement.”