ABB India bags breakthrough order for automating Reliance Life Sciences’ biopharmaceutical facilities

  • ABB India has secured an order from Reliance Life Sciences to deploy automation and control solutions for their new biosimilars and plasma proteins manufacturing facilities in Nashik, Maharashtra
  • The scope encompasses complete automation of the manufacturing process using ABB’s flagship Distributed Control System (DCS) Ability™ System 800xA, Remote I/O systems, Batch Recipe Management, and MES Integration
  • Reliance Life Sciences will harness ABB technology to attain operational excellence, reduce time to market, and ensure strict quality control of their manufacturing processes
  • By deploying ABB’s DCS operating on the latest Windows version, Reliance Life Sciences can reduce the total cost of ownership
  • ABB’s DCS solution provides an integration platform that helps in monitoring different plant sections and streamlining maintenance

ABB India has secured a major automation contract from Reliance Life Sciences (RLS), to automate their new manufacturing plants in Nashik, Maharashtra. RLS’ 160-acre facility at Nashik will house manufacturing plants for plasma proteins, biopharmaceuticals, oncology pharmaceuticals, and vaccines.

Large-scale biotechnology production presents distinct and complex process and automation challenges. These processes adhere to strict regulatory guidelines to ensure product quality, and ABB’s System 800xA® solution reduces manufacturing errors and ensures high-quality yields. It interfaces seamlessly with various skid systems and is used extensively for seamless operator interaction, batch control, and production information on the factory floor.

“We are proud to partner with Reliance Life Sciences on this critical project. This collaboration will reinforce our position in the pharma and life sciences market, where, as a technology provider, we see tremendous potential for growth and innovation,” said G. Balaji, SVP, Head of Energy Industries, ABB India. “With India rapidly progressing as a prominent biopharmaceutical manufacturing hub, we find ourselves well-poised to ride the wave of the industrial revolution driven by the adoption of automation in these segments, which is pivotal for large-scale production with quality assurance.”

System 800xA® will be installed in a virtualized environment for RLS. Virtualization brings many cost and operational benefits by simplifying how servers are managed and maintained. It significantly reduces the IT footprint and thus resultant operational costs. ABB’s multichannel remote I/O solutions will enable streamlined data communication, reduce wiring, declutter the hardware footprint in the plant, and improve space utilization and faster project execution. As installation is for a pharmaceutical manufacturing unit, the DCS would be supplied in compliance with US FDA 21 CFR Part 11, to meet the required standards.

ABB will deliver the DCS on the latest Windows Server 2022 platform, which will ensure extended lifecycle support and best-in-class software management. This helps Reliance Life Sciences to avoid any plant shutdowns for software upgrades, ultimately reducing overall costs associated with downtime, software or hardware updates, and related services. System 800xA® will provide an integration platform that brings together various plant components and areas, eliminating the need for multiple PLCs. This integration ensures a unified audit trail, integrated data reports, and streamlined operations, reducing maintenance, training needs, and inventory. Moreover, it simplifies third-party audits.

ABB has been delivering high-end DCS solutions for leading pharma companies in India and has been ranked the no.1 DCS provider in the world for the 23RD consecutive year, according to the ARC Advisory Group report 2021.

“Reliance Life Sciences has a tradition of leveraging automation technologies in its manufacturing processes, as part of its larger objectives in quality and productivity,” said K.V. Subramaniam, President of Reliance Life Sciences. “The partnership with ABB is not just part of this continuum, but also a step up in terms of virtualization and process control.”

In addition to the DCS, RLS will benefit by adopting ABB’s modular remote I/O solution which is more flexible and brings a plug-and-play concept to automation. This will allow them to achieve faster commissioning and process implementation with the ability to scale the capacity of the plant in the future.

Reliance Life Sciences has the largest number of biosimilars in the market in India and is under development globally. By scaling up its manufacturing facilities, the company aims to produce high-quality biosimilars at an affordable cost.

ABB’s Process Automation business automates, electrifies and digitalizes industrial operations that address a wide range of essential needs – from supplying energy, water and materials, to producing goods and transporting them to market. With its ~20,000 employees, leading technology and service expertise, ABB Process Automation helps customers in process, hybrid and maritime industries improve performance and safety of operations, enabling a more sustainable and resource-efficient future.