Category Archives: News

Extending GxP Monitoring Systems – Comfortably and easily

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Rotronic offers you the opportunity to economically upgrade your current environmental monitoring system (EMS) with a state-of-the-art EMS designed in collaboration with the pharmaceutical industry.

Universal Device Integration

The Rotronic Monitoring System (RMS) can provide the perfect solution for all your monitoring needs. RMS is an advanced modular monitoring system with all data available securely via any device, anywhere. RMS provides users with exactly the data they need and in the format they require with extensive reporting and configurable alarms. More importantly, RMS can support existing hardware and interface with other software/hardware platforms. RMS can be provided as a hosted cloud service or with a traditional license whereby the client installs the system on their servers (local or cloud).

Many third-party devices can easily integrate with RMS. Analogue devices can be connected using the RMS analogue to digital converter, or the “RMS-converter” can be used to integrate other digital devices. To avoid the risk of data loss during an interruption in communication between a device and the RMS server, both the analogue and digital inputs are available with local, internal logging. Once the connection is re-established, data will be automatically downloaded from the device and online graphs will be back-filled.

Rotronic RMS Architecture

With the RMS continuous environmental monitoring system RMS, Rotronic meets the requirements of “IoT” and “M2M”.

The Internet of Things (IoT), and Machine to Machine (M2M) communication are key factors in industry 4.0 design principals – launched at the Hannover Fair in Germany in 2011. One of the most important characteristics being interoperability, devices, machines, and people must be easily able to connect and communicate.

An IOT ecosystem comprises sensors which transmit data to the Internet via a “gateway” where it is stored securely in a certified data centre. This data can then be accessed, analysed, and forwarded to remote devices via the Internet.

This leads to another key design principal: decentralised decision making. From remote devices, analysis can be carried out, decisions made, and commands sent, all via the Internet, to IoT devices.

Remote access to devices allows for a third design principal: technical assistance. Services and support can be offered and carried out as a direct result of the output from one of the many devices in the IoT ecosystem.

Rotronic Monitoring System RMS: On-Premise or SAAS Solutions (Public or Exclusive)

RMS

Contact us to discuss your monitoring requirements whether GxP, Industrial or Commercial.

T. 01293 571000   E. instruments@rotronic.co.uk   W. www.rotronic.co.uk 

INDUSTRY 4.0 MONITORING FOR AUTOMOTIVE TESTING

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In 2018 the UK automotive sector was valued at £82 billion and employed 823,000 people.

As the trends towards automated, low carbon and electrical vehicles increase the requirements of modern testing and certification are critical. In this customer application we explore how one of the UK’s largest automotive test companies is meeting these new challenges helped by the adoption of the cutting edge Rotronic Monitoring System (RMS).

Automotive Test and Validation

In 2017 the Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) was introduced.  This lab test required the assessment of fuel consumption as well as CO2 and pollutant emissions from cars during
• Test cycles based on real-driving data
• Test cycles based on a variety of driving phases
• Test cycles using both heaviest and lightest power-train configurations

Facilities that provide these tests and have access to suitable test tracks are increasingly in high demand. Prior to testing cars must be preconditioned at specific environmental
conditions and during lab testing these conditions are replicated.

WLTP

The Application

In order to meet ongoing quality demands and compliance to the latest Vehicle Emissions Regulations (WLTP), our client required a solution to improve and enhance their monitoring capability in several key test areas. Latest standards required more frequent ambient measurements as well as five-minute rolling averages. Engine testing is undertaken in multiple soaking areas operating at different temperatures, ranging from -20 °C to +50 °C, requiring numerous temperature and humidity sensors monitoring different parts and areas of the test vehicles.

The Challenge
It is no longer practical to use a range of different monitoring platforms for every specific application. For the automotive industry the growth of the latest 5G and electric car technology provides new validation and testing challenges, a monitoring platform must be able to adapt to meet these new requirements easily. For our client the system had to be centrally managed with all data accessible from anywhere on site. Reporting, alarming and a clear audit trail were vital. Already having experience with a range of hardware and software it was clear that the system had to utilise standard IT infrastructure and software platforms.

car
Rolling road for vehicle testing

Hardware Integration and Standardisation

Investing in a monitoring system traditionally locked customers in to one supplier. Where possible, RMS has been designed to support Industry 4.0 open integration and interoperability. As such, RMS software is built as a standard web service. All data sits on a standard SQL database. Industrial device interoperability is never easy, RMS provides
options via simple APIs for many applications and analogue input modules for existing analogue hardware. When a robust and secure integration solution for digital hardware is required it can be professionally integrated using our RMS-Convertor module.

The result is that end users can add supported 3rd party devices with a few clicks. These devices benefit from secure data backup and auto-recovery of data in the event of any system downtime, as well as all the normal charting, reporting and alarming features RMS offers.

Project Overview

Our client engineers favoured Red Lion E3 modules, a proven industrial I/O device from Red Lion Controls. The E3 range includes 16 channel thermocouple devices, ideal for automotive testing. Integration was achieved in partnership with Rotronic R&D. Using a trial Red Lion E3 device Rotronic was able to fully integrate the unit. Final testing was undertaken by the client to confirm that the devices performed as required.

A key feature was that the Red Lion E3 modules have the ability to daisy chain Ethernet devices. Therefore, using a single port the 16x channel Red Lion module was networked along with a high accuracy humidity and temperature RMS LAN logger to every engine test cell providing a robust, elegant solution for this industrial application.

Millbrook

Product Focus – Rotronic Monitoring System (RMS)

High accuracy and high frequency multi parameter monitoring including temperature, humidity, pressure and dew point.
• On premise or cloud software solution
• Support for wired and wireless data loggers
• No local end user software required just a web-browser
• Full historic record and summary reporting
• High accuracy and high frequency ambient temperature and humidity monitoring
• Ability to calculate and record 5 minute rolling averages with alarms
• Extensive support for 3rd party devices and data streams

Read the case study from Red Lion on this project here; https://www.redlion.net/resources/millbrook-technology-park-case-study 

Contact us to discuss your monitoring requirements be they GxP, Industrial or Commercial.

Dr Jeremy Wingate
Rotronic

Invitation to the Sensor & Instrumentation Live Show – 25th-26th September 2019 – NEC Birmingham


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The Sensor and Instrumentation Live event is celebrating its 10th year in 2019, Rotronic and Michell Instruments will be teaming up to exhibit at the event and can be found on stand 72 at the NEC, Birmingham. Come along to the stand to gain expert knowledge from not one, but two leading instrumentation companies’ part of the Process Sensing Technologies (PST) group. They will also be representing PST companies Ntron Gas Measurement, Dynament and Status Scientific.

The stand will cover a variety of applications:

  • Humidity and temperature calibration in laboratories.
  • Room Monitoring (RMS Rotronic monitoring system).
  • Humidity and temperature analysis in the pharmaceutical industry, production processes, storage, test facilities and many more applications.
  • Oxygen and humidity control, improving end product quality in additive manufacturing.

Michell Instruments and Rotronic will be exhibiting their extensive range of products,

RMS KIT
RMS Kit

with Rotronic presenting their full range of humidity temperature and dew point instrumentation which includes handhelds, data loggers and transmitters. A feature at the event includes their own Rotronic Monitoring System (RMS), a cloud-based platform that integrates both Rotronic and third-party equipment to provide users with real-time monitoring information for use in applications such as warehouses and pharmaceutical production.

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SF82 – Dew Point Transmitter

Michell Instruments will showcase their latest dew-point transmitter the SF82, designed specifically for compressed air dryers it can cover a range of -60 to +60 °C dew point, demonstrating its suitability for dryer control. This new sensor is fast responding providing highly stable, long-term measurement reliability. Alongside this Michell Instruments will provide an insight on their range of world leading dew-point transmitters, chilled mirror instruments, oxygen analyzers and relative humidity products.

Information on products and services from sister companies Ntron Gas Measurement, Dynament and Status Scientific will be available at the event. You can discover more about the PST combined range of instruments and sensors for gas analysis and process control by attending the Sensors and Instrumentation live event.

 

 

Advanced Industrial Temperature and Humidity Probes

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Well known as a leading manufacturer of precision temperature and humidity sensors with the widest measurement ranges -100…200 °C, 0…100 %rh, Rotronic has developed its industrial range of probes still further providing even higher performance. Included is an awaited industrial probe for the Rotronic continuous environmental monitoring integrated system (RMS) with all data available anywhere and on any device. Applications include manufacturing, pharmaceutical, food, process monitoring, cosmetic, paper, textile, brick & tile industry, dryers, climate test chambers.

hc2a-icxxx

The new probes are available in a choice of 100 mm length (2 m or 5 m factory fitted cable) and 250 mm length with fitted 2 m cable. The RMS fast response digital probe is available in 100 mm length with 2 m fitted cable. All probes are Ø15 mm and manufactured in industrial PPS material

Enhancements

  • The latest Rotronic HYGROMER® HT-1 state of the art sensor is fitted, it measures temperature and humidity and calculates dew point values.
  • Highest possible measurement accuracy ±0.8 %rh, ±0.1 °C (10…30 °C), fast and stable response, highest long-term stability and robust mechanical construction with PTFE surface protection.
  • Continuous measurement is now achievable at up to 190 °C constant environment level (200 °C peak load), 93 °Cdp.
  • Connector housing electronics are now potted; the sensor head is steam tight.
  • Filters have been specially designed to suit all applications, their purpose it to protect the sensors from mechanical damage. Polyethylene, wire mesh, sinter steel and Teflon types are available.

Rotronic Probe Features

There is a digital interface with all current Rotronic devices enabling rapid probe exchange when calibration or service work are due thereby reducing process downtime to seconds (no calibration adjustment required).

Probes have an analogue 0…1 V output for interface with data acquisition systems and OEM applications.

Rotronic sensors can be calibrated and adjusted (if outside customer required tolerances) giving them a long service life.

The latest advanced industrial probes from Rotronic are a significant development.

Contact Rotronic to discuss your application or project.

T. 01293 571000   E. instruments@rotronic.co.uk   W. http://www.rotronic.co.uk 

Regulatory Storage of Medical Drugs

casestudyMedicines are sensitive products. Having them stored at temperatures too low or too high can affect their overall quality, potentially making them less effective and even causing adverse effects during use. This means that correct storage conditions are not only essential to ensure medicine quality, they are also required by law.

Why monitor environmental conditions?

Medicine control and EU GDP Guidelines suggest that suitable equipment and procedures should be in place to monitor the environment where medicinal products are stored. Environmental factors to be considered include temperature, light, humidity, and cleanliness. For example, many medicines should be stored between +15°C and +25°C to ensure their quality is maintained. Other temperature-sensitive drugs, such as insulin or some antibiotic liquids must be kept in refrigerators between +2°C and +8°C. If medicines are not stored at correct temperatures they muse be destroyed, resulting in large, unnecessary, financial losses.

How Rotronic can help?

Rotronic has over 50 years’ experience in environmental monitoring to GxP guidelines. With “RMS” Rotronic can provide a monitoring system that was developed based on GAMP5 recommendations, in collaboration with multiple experienced pharmaceutical users to comply with several industry regulations, including FDA CFR 21 Part 11 and EU Annex 11.

RMS is an advanced, modular monitoring system with all data available securely via any device, anywhere. It can provide users with exactly the data they need, in the format they require, with extensive reporting and configurable alarms.

One of the key features of RMS is that not only can it be used with Rotronic hardware, but it can also be used with existing hardware from other manufacturers, as well as interact with other software / hardware platforms. RMS can be provided as a hosted cloud service or using a traditional license whereby the client installs the system on their own servers (local or cloud).

In summary RMS provides….

  • Live and interactive charts for all monitored parameters
  • Full alarm and alerts, easily configured
  • All data available with automated scheduled report generation
  • Complete event logging and compliance with GxP requirements
  • Email, phone, SMS, relay and custom protocol alarm notifications
  • Automatic data back filling and retrospective alarms (ideal for transportation logging)
  • Interactive, user configurable on-screen layouts

Alarming / Reporting

The alarm function in RMS ensures users are alerted whenever conditions stray outside their set limits. For example, if a refrigerator is broken, causing its internal temperature to rise above limits, an alert is triggered, notifying users, via email, SMS, or phone call, to act before medicines are damaged. The warning function can also be used to warn users whenever environmental conditions get close their critical limits, giving time to react before the critical limit is reached. Depending on individual requirements, a detailed alarm report can be automatically generated and sent to selected users via email.

                                                            Rotronic products
RMS KITAutomated solution

The RMS Starter Kit for monitoring storage of medicines includes three wireless temperature loggers, a gateway (wireless receiver) and the corresponding software license. We have also included a service level agreement to help ensure a quick response to any questions that may arise.

Standalone solution

Data logger TL-1D or HL-1D Collage HL-1D.jpg
For a standalone solution, you can use our TL-1D temperature loggers or HL-1D humidity and temperature logger. These battery powered devices record environmental data which can be accessed by connecting the logger, via its USB port, to a PC running the free HW4-LITE software. These devices are not compatible with the RMS meaning data must be accessed manually. Once data has been downloaded, HW4 can be used to generate a detailed PDF report, which includes a graphical representation of the data, along with various statistics, and details of any period during which conditions where outside their alarm limits.

To find out more about our range of monitoring solutions, please contact us on 01293 571000 email: instruments@rotronic.co.uk or visit http://www.rotronic.com/rms

 

 

Rotronic ISO17025 Calibration

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Introduction

Rotronic instruments have a UKAS / ISO17025
accredited laboratory for the calibration of humidity, temperature and dew point instrumentation. We are proud to advise that we can offer some of the lowest measurement uncertainties of any commercial laboratory in northern Europe.

Why is Calibration important?

Calibration is the only way to prove instrument performance. By comparing an instrument against a known reference at several stable conditions we can asses what error exists. Over time we can assess the instruments drift and repeatability. Once errors are know they can be corrected for or adjusted out. ISO17025 calibration is performed with a laboratory that is regularly audited to ensure compliance to strict standards. All ISO17025 laboratories have defined measurement uncertainties and regularly perform inter-comparisons with other laboratories to ensure performance. Calibration is essential for compliance within many industries (FDA, GAMP, ISO 9001) and should be considered by anyone that wishes to make meaningful measurements. Instruments need not be calibrated over their    entire working range, only the range they are used at. For relative humidity it is best to calibrate at the working temperature or over a temperature range.

Evaluating Uncertainty 

Improving quality is the key to mitigating risks and reducing costs. However, measurement uncertainty is a parameter that is often overlooked. It is an important aspect of measurement that affects quality, costs, decisions and risks. Measurement uncertainty is a calculation that defines the range in which the “true value” is expected to lie. Measurement uncertainty is calculated by tabulating the known sources of error in terms of probability distribution. The final result is typically displayed as a value at 95% confidence. Uncertainly is a far better term to use vs accuracy, uncertainly includes details of the specific instrument and how it is used. The need for increased accuracy is not as important as the need for quality measurements and knowledge of measurement uncertainty

Calibration SerPicture1vices – Our comprehensive range of industry leading calibration services include:

  • Calibration of relative humidity measuring instruments using unsaturated salt solutions at 5,10,11,20,35,50,60,65,75,80 & 95%rh.
  • Calibration of dew point measuring instruments over the range -60°C dewpoint to 95°C dew point.
  • Calibration of relative humidity measuring instruments by comparison with a chilled mirror hygrometer and platinum resistances thermometers in the range 0°C to 95°C; 2%rh to 98%rh.
  • Temperature calibration of probes in air -60°C
    to 150°C
  • Temperature calibration of probes in liquid
    -70°C to 200°C

We meet the needs of our customers who cover a wide range of industries and sectors some which include Agrochemical, HVAC, Food,  Medical, Meteorological, Pharmaceutical.

Calibration Solutions from Rotronic

Rotronic offer the most complete range of humidity calibration equipment available on the market today from cost effective to high end solutions to meet all requirements and applications. Rotronic ISO 17025 Calibration labs are situated in UK, Switzerland, Germany and USA.

For information on any of our products and services please visit our website www.rotronic.co.uk

 

 

Simple connectivity with the Rotronic Monitoring System (RMS)

Introduction:

Reducing costs and improving quality are key drivers for any business. RMS applications typically target these aspects of our customers operations and a recent project with here in the UK was no exception.

Following an initial enquiry it was clear that a custom selection of RMS hardware and setup would be required, however this was no reason not to proceed with a bespoke solution.

Customer Process:

The project was based around a wider roll out of a new technology in the manufacturing process of our customer. The process required the use of special epoxy adhesives that themselves require very strict ambient and surface temperature conditions. Outside these conditions the bonding process would not be adequate. As such monitoring was critical to ensure and prove conditions were being met during production.

Some Chemistry:

Epoxy resins a reactive pre-polymers, they have the potential to react and cross link. It is this cross linking that when triggered turns a stable liquid into a thermo-setting polymer. The set polymer typically has extremely high thermal and chemical resistance. Epoxy resins are commonly used as adhesives and coatings in many industries such as carbon fibre and ship building.

What are the monitoring requirements

Ambient conditions and surface temperatures are critical for the client procedure.  The production area was therefore independently controlled by a specific HVAC system. Previous manual checks lacked quantitative detail and were costly to implement

The Solution – RMS Continuous Monitoring

RMS provided the perfect solution. Using an RMS-LOG-868 high accuracy humidity and temperature loggers combined with an economical RMS-MLOG mini-loggers all measurements could be made in real time. A custom magnetic surface temperature probe was utilised so the customer could accurately measure the surface temperature as per their quality requirements. Live ambient dew point was calculated via RMS and then this value was compared with surface temperature using a simple arithmetic calculation. Thus a live trace of surface temperature vs dew point temperature was provided giving a clear indication whether there would be a risk of surface condensation. Parameters were configured with warning and alarm limits linked to emails, SMS and telephone alerts as well as clear visual displays via tablets and PCs.

As such the customer could be confident that should conditions not be favourable they would know, in addition for QA a full record of all conditions was easily available with automated reporting and full audit trail.

API Example5
Live data direct to your PC, Tablet or Mobile device.

Simplifying Connectivity

Cconnectivity was an issue on such a large site. No network access was available at all. A 4G solution resolved these and provided data direct connectivity at all times through out the site.

Fully mobile kit was created requiring only a mains power supply for operation. Wireless loggers could then be moved and placed as required always in range of the 4G communications kit.

Even if connectivity or power was lost for any reason, all the wireless loggers would continue logging on their 3 year batteries and maintain a 1 month record that automatically synchronised back to the RMS software once 4G connection was restored.

The entire system was setup and configured exactly as required from the Rotronic office, including device pairing and software configuration allowing the client to log on from their offices and make comments and changes. A subsequent visit to site met with no technical issues or surprises. This also kept service costs to a minimum for an initial proof of concept project.

RMS - Info Graphic - 4G

4G connectivity reducing need for on-site infrastructure and IT issues.

This is just one example of an RMS implementation. With a range of cloud and on premises software along with wireless and wired devices if you have a monitoring application we are confident we can find a solution to meet your needs and budget.

To find out more about our range of monitoring solutions and instruments contact us or visit http://www.rotronic.com/rms

 

Dr Jeremy Wingate
Rotronic