A specialty biopharmaceutical organization will expand its research and development capabilities for creating life-saving medications using process control solutions from Honeywell.

Shire Human Genetic Therapies (HGT), a business unit of Shire plc, will use Honeywell's Experion Process Knowledge System (PKS), Experion Batch Manager, OneWireless industrial wireless network and Uniformance Process Historian Database (PHD) to control manufacturing processes at its new $250-million production facility in Lexington, Mass., which is scheduled for completion in spring 2010.

Shire HGT will develop, manufacture and commercialize therapies for life-threatening genetic diseases. According to the company, the new facility will be the largest disposable biotechnology site in the United States. This is a new concept where disposable vessels and tank liners are used to reduce the cost of cleaning and verifying process equipment. The site also will include cell-culture production, a clinical suite and just-in-time warehousing.

"Technology that simplifies scale-up from R&D to commercialized production is critical for biotech facilities to produce as efficiently and reliably as possible," said Don Wuchterl, director of manufacturing for Shire Human Genetic Therapies. "Experion and OneWireless are proven to streamline operations and will provide the flexibility required for a multi-purpose facility such as ours."

Shire will use Experion as the primary control platform for the facility. The system helps operators run production by integrating critical subsystems throughout the plant, providing a single view into the manufacturing process via client operator stations. The processing capacity of the C300 controller will reduce the amount of hardware needed to automate Shire's manufacturing process as well as reduce operating costs, according to Honeywell.

Shire also will use Experion Batch Manager, which simplifies operations by allowing manufacturers to quickly execute complex batch recipes reliably in a regulated environment.

Additionally, the OneWireless mesh network technology will allow Shire to mount controllers on movable equipment without cabling issues. Wireless remote operator stations will be used to help reduce the overall number of stations required and eliminate the need for hardened enclosures in environmentally sensitive areas.

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