Bioprocessing 4.0 is all about digitalization and how it can streamline the analysis and multidirectional communication of data—be it between equipment, among unit operations, or across groups and stages of development. Many of the concepts behind Bioprocessing 4.0 may already be familiar. They echo the concepts behind Industry 4.0, the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.” These concepts—connectivity, intelligence, and flexible automation—have appeared frequently, if disjointedly, in general discussions about business and how it might transform industrial manufacturing. Despite the challenges they pose, Industry 4.0 concepts are beginning to penetrate various industries. However, pulling the concepts together and making them work for the complex world of biomanufacturing may be particularly difficult. “Difficult,” we should hasten to add, doesn’t mean “impossible” or “not worth the trouble.” In fact, Industry 4.0 concepts are winning over many experts in biomanufacturing. Several of these experts were consulted for this article. To advantage our readers, these experts are sharing their insights here and now instead of holding onto them until upcoming meetings are held.
Republished with permission of Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News.