Pharmaceuticals & Biomedical

Pharmaceuticals & Biomedical: No More Tedious Lab Tasks, Complex Risk Management and Costly Contamination Issues

Robotic Automation Unlike Any Other

If you’d like to free your skilled workers to spend more time performing high-value work instead of routine and mundane lab tasks, and if you’d like to safeguard them while eradicating the risk of human contamination, you’d benefit from robotisation and automation.

It begins with our teleoperation solutions where an operator controls our Hand via a haptic glove to carry out mission-critical tasks. The hardware can log the trajectory, grasp forces and various other data which can then be analysed by AI experts who can programme the Hand to repeat the behaviour autonomously.

We’re particularly interested in speaking with those who would like to explore autonomous or teleoperated robots in vaccine and drug manufacturing. It is a crucial part of the healthcare supply chain, and the need for fast-tracking this step is higher than ever as exacerbated by COVID-19.


Key Areas:

  • Repetitive and mundane tasks
  • Product testing
  • Material handling
  • Sampling and quality control
  • Inspection


Specific Tasks Include:

  • Ensuring that the correct amount of medication, with the exact chemical composition and weight, are precisely packed into the appropriate containers.
  • Labelling, capping, collating, packing, and shipping
  • Collating personalised medicines to allow faster, around-the-clock processing time for quick delivery.
  • Lab analytic tasks (Hyflam tasks)
  • Pipetting fluids from one container to another
  • Opening/ closing vial lids
  • Scooping up powders and transferring into containers
  • Operating typical lab equipment, e.g. mixers


Key Benefits:

  1. 0% risk to the worker from handling highly potent material with active substances
  2. Go from reduced risk of human contamination to NO RISK of human contamination
  3. Free worker for more value-adding tasks
  4. Increase productivity with more speed than humans and more operational hours
  5. Eliminate gowning and restrictive personal protective equipment (PPE)
  6. Reduce the cost of equipment maintenance and significant secondary waste
  7. Reduce footprint (compared to humans)
  8. New technology to encourage millennial recruits
  9. Reduce training overhead
  10. Can work alongside machine vision and haptic feedback


Teleoperation in action:

Contact us for a remote teleoperation demo or to discuss how we can automate procedures for you. We’d be happy to discuss other pain points you may have and how we can help.

We would need to work with you initially to develop our technology for your exact purposes so that you have all that you require to get the best results.


Ways of Introducing New Technology:

Many pharma companies worry about the cost, ease of use and the acceptance by staff when it comes to adopting robotic technology however robotic technology can be an excellent investment regardless of whether you’re a large manufacturer or an SME. Return of investment comes in the form of increased health & safety and increased profits associated with high-speed production, more operational hours, improved quality and demand, and savings in energy, equipment, and PPE.


Case Study:

Automating Procedures for GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

We have a non-disclosure agreement (and you’ll see a lot of that around) which means we can’t say much, but we can name drop that we’ve worked with GSK as well as mentioning the term “automation.”


Proof of Concept:

Material Handling for A Multinational Pharma Giant

We’re discussing their critical challenges in isolator tasks within aseptic manufacturing that can benefit from our Tactile Telerobot as well as demonstrating our technology in a mock-up environment. They are willing to support Shadow’s Technology Development as a supporting end-user partner sharing their expertise and knowledge in aseptic manufacturing.


Inspection for Another Multinational Pharma Giant

This pharma giant came across our Tactile Telerobot in a couple of exhibitions and contacted us with their challenges in their diabetic product manufacturing process. The automated process takes place at low temperatures. It requires a human operator to monitor the entire process from start to finish so that they can revive the system in case of an accident or emergency (e.g., broken cartridge) which is not only costly but brings the whole production line to a halt. Our Tactile Telerobot can remove this constraint and flag an alarm as soon as a human operator’s attention is needed, and the repair can take place from a remote location without the operator having to travel down.


Sampling and Quality Control for Two Global Pioneers in Pharmaceuticals

One of the multinational healthcare companies has identified use cases that can benefit separating humans from the actual task and enabling remote execution using our Tactile Telerobot. Similarly, the second pharma company is looking to distance humans when carrying out containment content inspection tasks which contain active substances that are potentially hazardous to humans and the environment. Our technology ensures the contents are free of human contamination.


Key Event:

SILA-ELRIG Drug Discovery Workshop 2019

The European Laboratory Research & Innovation Group (ELRIG) is a not-for-profit organisation based in the UK. They are leaders in the provision of scientific meetings and conferences; bringing together academic and biopharma industry experts and thought leaders to exchange ideas and information. Shadow was a keynote speaker at their Drug Discovery workshop presenting a poster to showcase a day in the life of a chemist, with and without automation.


We’re here if you’d like to discuss more around our teleoperation systems. You can come and see it in action too.

Put me in touch