Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Top Selling Biologics for 2011 by @CellCultureDish

Two weeks ago, The Cell Culture Dish posted their list of top selling biologics for 2011.

It's a good read.  TheDish points out that though even though CHO is a decades-old technology, it remains the "workhorse" of the biologics industry 20-years after its first application.

pareto top 10 2011 expression systems
Pareto Plot showing CHO rules the Top 10

Of the Top 10 biologics sold in 2011, almost 40 billion dollars were biologics produced from CHO; this figure accounts for 75% of Top 10 worldwide sales.  E.Coli stood at about 12% of total Top 10 list.

How much longer can CHO remain dominant?  According to TheDish, there area 3 areas of work to keep that dominance going:
  1. Gene synthesis
  2. Media optimization
  3. Perfusion
My opinion on the dominance of CHO is simply momentum.  The cost of Genentech/Roche switching off CHO is too great when the infrastructure to produce antibodies with CHO is already in place.

For grins, I made a pareto by company:

pareto top 10 2011 by company

And the ranking goes:
  1. Roche
  2. Amgen
  3. Abbott
I know it says BiogenIdec as 3rd, but the Rituxan accounted for 6.7 billion in sales, but not all of it goes to BiogenIdec; I'm pretty sure it is split with (Genentech)/Roche.  So that Roche bar ought to be taller and the BiogenIdec bar ought to be shorter.

Nice read, TheDish... nice read.

Friday, November 23, 2012

C:\Program Files\PI

The default location for installing PI is:


It is actually not the Program Files folder:

C:\Program Files\PI

And please don't put it there.

That stinking space between "Program" and "Files" screws things up.

In fact, if you can, don't install it on the C: drive (which I'm assuming is where your OS files are stored).

If you have another partition like E: then you're petter off putting it there.

The vast majority of installations I do put the PI server on the E: drive.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

KEPServerEX OPC Connectivity Suite

I just plunked down some dough for Kepware's KEPServerEX OPC Connectivity Suite. Actually, it was a part of a project for a client, but nonetheless, Kepware makes one of the best OPC servers in the business.

Read this intro to OPC.

So if you've got "Islands of Automation," that is, a diverse ecosystem of PLC and DCS vendors as a part of your operations, getting these systems to talk to PI with OPC is the best way to go.

Most operations aren't intelligently designed from Day 1. Operations tend to evolve. People come and go. Corporations make mid-course corrections to their strategy and even the best automation systems evolve into silos of automation.

OPC breaks down these silos and enables communications, and none better than Kepware's KEPServerEX.

kepserver opc diagram
Each modern PLC vendor writes an OPC Server for their PLC. In the diagram to the left, those are the blue computers at the bottom.

The OPC Server allows OPC clients to connect and get data. This is where the KEPServerEX OPC Connectivity Suite comes in. One part of the server is an OPC Client (the yellow puzzle piece in the diagram).

And the other part of the KEPServer is the OPC Server. In a sense, this makes the KEPServerEX the "One-stop-shopping" for OPC data.

So from here, you get to send the data to wherever you want to go.

Biotech/pharma companies typically choose OSIsoft's PI System. And to connect there, you just need the PI OPC Interface, which is an OPC client.

You could've connected PI directly to the OPC Server of the PLCs, and a lot of people do. But if you want a separation of duties between your systems, Kepware OPC is where I've seen a lot of people meet success.

But here's the really cool part. Kepware has impeccable technical support. They're a small company so you're not getting routed around the globe for your tech support calls... you're usually talking to the same guy to follow your issue to solution.

Evaluating their systems is worth your while if you're looking to upgrade your automation.

Download Demo

Disclosure: I have no business relationship with Kepware and receive nothing if you buy their products.  Also, I didn't get paid anything to write this post.

Monday, November 5, 2012

5 Things About Connecting To DeltaV OPC Server

Configuring an OPC client to talk to DeltaV's OPC Server is a chore. And surprisingly, there's not a lot of Google-ready goodies on the matter.

To rectify that situation, here's a list of the Top 5 things you need to know about OPC.DeltaV.1

5. OPC Remote - required client software

OPC Remote refers to the software you need to install on the OPC Client to be able to talk to DeltaV OPC.  I found this strange because when I was the PI OPC Interface to a KEPServerEX, OSI provided all the software for the OPC client and Kepware provided all the software for the OPC server.

Whatever the case, you need to execute OPCRemote.exe on each machine you designate as an OPC client. This package contains the requirements and diagnostic tools like OPC WatchIt.

4. OPC WatchIt! - diagnostic tool

This Windows application is a single form that let's you connect to the DeltaV OPC Server.  It's installed on the DeltaV Application Station and you ought to run it there to see if the OPC Server is up.

If it's working on the App Station, but not on the client machine, you know that you have a connectivity problem.  If it's working on the client machine, you know you're close to getting data flowing.

3. FrsOpcDv

The DeltaV OPC Server does NOT run as it's own Windows Service.
Taskmgr FrsOpcDv
 As in, if you type services.msc and go hunting through that list, you won't find anything that resembles the OPC server.   But if you type taskmgr and look through the programs that are running, you'll see FrsOpcDv.exe.  That, right there, is the DeltaV OPC Server.

This means that when you're setting up DCOM settings that you need to visit this entry in DCOM Config.

2. Local User Account is Your Only Option

There's only one way to connect to DeltaV OPC Server and that's with a local user account.  The one that's pre-configured is called, "DeltaVAdmin."  This account has to exist on the DeltaV App Station as well as the PROPLUS for the data to get sent.

What's crazier is that DeltaV is hard-coded to block anonymous access, which means your OPC client must be running as DeltaVAdmin (or equivalent).  If you're connecting DeltaV to a PI-OPC Interface, make sure the interface is running as "DeltaVAdmin".  This is basically your only option to getting it to work: you cannot use the local SYSTEM account.

1. DeltaVAdmin Needs DCOM Permissions

It follows that you need to create a local user on your OPC client called DeltaVAdmin.  It also follows that you need to grant this local DeltaVAdmin user Local and Remote authorities:

  • Local Access
  • Remote Access
  • Local Launch 
  • Remote Launch
  • Local Activation
  • Remote Activation
That's basically the list of things I wish I knew going into connecting to a DeltaV system via OPC.

Need A Pro Onsite?