Monday, May 9, 2016

New DynoChem cooling and antisolvent crystallization toolbox released

We were delighted to release in April our new crystallization process design toolbox, having spent much of 2015 working with customers to better define requirements and piloting the toolbox as it developed in several live sessions.

Inspired by the user interface of our successful solvent swap model, the Main Inputs tab serves as a dashboard for designing and visualizing your crystallization process.

You can get a good intro to the toolbox from the preview webinar we recorded in January 2016.  In short, we combined several of our popular crystallization utilities, enhanced them and then automated the building of a crystallization kinetic model in the background.  That model is ready to use for parameter fitting and detailed process predictions if you have suitable experimental data.

As you might expect, you can generate a solubility curve within seconds of pasting your data.  You can also make quick estimates of operating profiles (cooling and/or addition) for controlled crystallization.  And you can estimate the final PSD from the seed PSD and mass.  That's all within a few minutes and before using the kinetic model.

The toolbox supports both design of experiments (helping make each lab run more valuable) and design of your crystallization process, especially in relation to scale-up or scale-down.  There's a dedicated training exercise that walks you through application to a new project.

We'd be delighted to hear your feedback in due course.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Continuous Manufacturing: A tide in the affairs of men

A lot of the good 'flow' puns and quotations are already well used by us and others.  However, the words of Brutus in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar do seem quite apt for the current momentum behind continuous manufacturing / aka 'flow chemistry'.

Scale-up Systems was delighted to attend Flow Chemistry III in Cambridge, UK, March 14-16, where an international group of practitioners from academia, industry and continuous reactor vendors assembled to share state-of-the-art work in this area.

Numerous university researchers, including Prof. Oliver Kappe of Karl-Franzens University, talked about how this technology is allowing them to work in conditions not possible with traditional round bottom flasks and to approach new chemistries in this way.  While industrial speakers mainly concentrated on the benefits and practicalities of operating continuously.  These ranged from Jesus Alcazar of Jannsen who presented their roll-out of “Flow Chemistry as a tool for Drug Discovery” through to Malcolm Berry who’s plenary detailed GSK’s journey in “Industrialisation of API Continuous Processing, from Lab to Factory.  What have we learnt along the way?” 

A strong take home for Scale-up Systems was an oft-repeated message that DynoChem and reaction kinetics are key tools for implementation of Continuous Manufacturing of APIs.   Prof Frans Muller of Leeds University made a presentation that covered in detail how kinetic motifs can be used to explore the Design Space with limited experimental data and this message was echoed by Malcolm Berry who noted that a wealth of process knowledge was obtained with a kinetic model that would not have been possible via a DoE approach.

You can find relevant tools in our online library with this link.  Watch out for a new utility coming shortly for modeling a sequence of unit operations based on residence time distribution models.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Mitigating the Risk of Coprecipitation of Pinacol during Isolation from Telescoped Miyaura Borylation and Suzuki Couplings ...

We thought we would highlight this recent reference as one that is worthy of your attention.

It's a nice combination of different types of process model and experimental data to understand an unexpected problem and find operating conditions to ensure high purity product.

The elegant approach spans multiple unit operations, as shown below.


Friday, January 1, 2016

Use these links to get Advice, Guidance and Help as you apply our tools in 2016

Are you managing a team that works in process development and scale-up?  Or working at the coalface applying our tools on a regular basis?  Or perhaps you're a former DynoChem user whose modeling exploits have helped lead to rapid promotion :) and it's been a while since you last visited us?

Either way, you should find the following links interesting and useful as you start the new year of 2016.
  • For general advice on topics in process development and scale-up, use the 'advice' search string in DynoChem Resources, or click this link: https://dcresources.scale-up.com/?q=advice  
  • One document that appears in this list has some new additions including a list of typical values for process parameters and a list of recommended text books for your department library.
  • To get a helicopter view and roadmap about how to apply our software in a specific area, search instead for 'guidance' or click https://dcresources.scale-up.com/?q=guidance
  • The solid-liquid separation guidance has been updated recently to help define how to set up a lab filtration rig, thanks to publications by customers such as BMS and Amgen:
Of course you can share all of these links with your team and colleagues by email and otherwise.

And we'd love to get both your and their feedback in due course so that we can improve our tools for the benefit the whole process development and scale-up community.

Monday, November 23, 2015

AIChE 2015; QbD, Awards, Reception; honoured to be made a Fellow

Readers of this blog (and members of the DynoChem community in general) will be aware that the AIChE Annual Meeting is an excellent place to learn about the current practicalities of implementing QbD.

The 2015 Annual meeting took place in Salt Lake City earlier this month and three of our team attended, Peter, Marion and myself (Joe).  We attended the pharma sessions mostly, plus a few process development, green chemistry and mixing sessions.  We were delighted to see so many customers presenting their DynoChem work and you can download a list of papers that referenced DynoChem here (Microsoft OneDrive) or here (Dropbox).  We also presented on some lab reactor characterisation work carried out with Pfizer and this will be presented as a DynoChem webinar in 2016 and the slides will be made available in DynoChem Resources.

We participated in the QbD Awards presentation, where the drug substance prize sponsored by our company (Scale-up Systems) went to Dr Dan Hallow of J&J (formerly BMS).

And we held a reception/party for our customers, which we run every few years, featuring news and previews of forthcoming tools and the DynoChem Jeopardy game, in which the categories this year were Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Ireland and DynoChem.  A team assembled from Hovione (Portugal), Dow (Freeport, TX) and Eastman (Kingsport, TN) won the prize.  For more pictures, see our Facebook page.

Winners of DynoChem Jeopardy at AIChE 2015
Finally, I had the honour this year of being made a Fellow of AIChE, a distinction that I will wear with pride and also leverage to spread the word about the power of excellent chemical engineering in today's world.


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Try attending our webinars on your phone / other mobile device

We record all of our webinars so that you can play them back if you miss them live or want a recap.  It's even better if you can attend live - then you have the chance to put your questions and comments to the speaker, live in the meeting chat pod.

With customers spread all over the world, our events may fall while you are having breakfast, or at the end of your day when you are back home.  That's why we've been investigating how well current mobile technology supports meeting attendance on your smartphone.  If that works, you can attend from pretty much anywhere you can get a phone signal.

The good news is that the Adobe Connect app is available for both iOS and Android platforms and this can be downloaded in the App Store or the Play Store.


Remember to register for the webinar in the usual way, so that our meeting facilitator is expecting you. Then at meeting time, open your mobile browser and navigate to our standard meetings page: http://dcresources.scale-up.com/JoinMeeting; enter your name and click the Join Meeting button as if you were at your PC.  Your phone (iOS or Android) should take care of the rest, prompting you to open the Adobe Connect app and Request Entry.

Important:  Use your full name for identification purposes.

Once admitted to the meeting, you'll enjoy audio and the usual screens like this (all captures taken recently using an iPhone 5S):




Give this a try when you get a chance and let us know how it goes.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Use kinetic models to obtain conservative estimates of TMR (time to maximum rate)

Readers with an interest in process safety (isn't that everyone?) should be aware of some important limitations in the traditional method for obtaining TMR, the time to maximum rate, as referenced here, for example.

Wilfried Hoffmann, one of our principal consultants supporting users and an experienced former specialist in process safety at Pfizer, highlighted in his December 2014 DynoChem webinar how:

  1. the traditional approach to TMR using MTSR (maximum temperature reached as a result of adiabatic temperature rise of the desired reaction, after a cooling failure) ignores the kinetics of the desired reaction; that makes it simple, but potentially less accurate; this is understandable as when the method was developed, kinetics were less readily obtained
  2. the traditional method neglects the time to MTSR in calculating TMR and time to explosion
  3. the modern method uses kinetics to get the true TMR
  4. there are two extremes where the difference between traditional and modern methods is significant:
    • with a slow reaction, perhaps taking place at low temperature, it may take a long time to reach MTSR; in this case, traditional TMR < true TMR and the traditional method may be used safely; it overestimates risk
    • in situations where on the way to MTSR, there is a heat flow contribution from the undesired reaction, the adiabatic temperature rise will then be higher than MTSR and the true TMR will be shorter than the estimate using the traditional method.

You can watch a preview of Wilfried's discussion on YouTube.  You can also read more in his book chapter here.

Needless to say, we recommend that you use kinetic information to calculate TMR, so that you can make stronger safety statements.  If you have access to DynoChem and our online library, follow this link to find the main tools, step by step training and a nice customer case study by Siegfried.

Slide from Wilfried Hoffmann's webinar, illustrating response surfaces of true TMR, obtained from kinetic models of the desired and undesired reactions.

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