Launched by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), the aim of the PAT concept (Process Analytical Technology) is to encourage companies to strive for better control of their processes in order to guarantee optimum quality and return on investment.
The overall aim of the OptiPAT project is to develop online analysis tools, based on breakthrough optical technology, consisting of innovative optical measurement systems:
- an online sensor adaptable for liquids or solids processes for the physical and chemical characterisation of products,
- a software system to process the data flow in real time for process monitoring purposes.
The applications are mainly focused on the pharmaceutical and agro-environmental sectors.
The main advantages expected from real time monitoring of product quality are increased productivity and a better understanding of the complete industrial process along the whole production line.
In November 2011, the first work was undertaken for INDATECH, the project coordinator, and the seven associated OptiPAT partners:
- the ARMINES Centre Alès (Ecole des Mines), CEA-Liten Grenoble and CNRS-IUSTI (Université de Provence-Marseille) laboratories
- the companies IMECA PROCESS, ISORG, ONDALYS et SANOFI AVENTIS.
The project has an overall budget of 3.3 m euros for a duration of 36 months. It has received financial aid under the joint ministerial call for projects (FUI12), with additional funding from local authorities.