Advancing vision systems in biotech manufacturing


Industrial communication specialist, Brainboxes, explains how its Power-over-Ethernet enabled Gigabit Ethernet switches are supporting critical vision systems used in biomanufacturing facilities.

Biomanufacturing, often referred to as biotech, is a manufacturing process that utilises biological systems, such as living cells or microorganisms, to produce commercially valuable products. Commonly employed in the production of medicines, vaccines, enzymes, biofuels, and a wide range of bioproducts, biotech offers a sustainable and efficient method for large-scale production with applications in pharmaceuticals, healthcare, food and beverage processing, and various industrial sectors.

For one leading biotech company, vision systems are employed for critical tasks such as inspecting products for defects, verifying assembly processes and ensuring overall product quality. The integration of vision systems within the company’s facility enhances the capabilities of its machines, allowing them to ‘see’ and respond to the environment, ultimately improving production accuracy and reducing the need for manual intervention.

The biotech manufacturer’s vision systems, essential for stringent quality control and adherence to regulatory requirements, involve multiple cameras, sensors, and other devices distributed across a vast facility. Brainboxes’ newly developed range of Power over Ethernet (PoE) Gigabit Ethernet switches was pivotal to the system, providing the necessary network infrastructure to support communication between the various components and serving as a central connectivity hub.

Managing data transmission and power distribution for the numerous cameras and sensors distributed across the production floor became a logistical challenge. The automatic PoE negotiation and centralised power management offered by the PoE Gigabit Ethernet Brainboxes simplified the installation by allowing the transmission of both data and power over a single Ethernet cable, ensuring seamless and efficient operation.

The Gigabit Ethernet speed of the switches proved instrumental, facilitating rapid data transmission crucial for real-time decision-making in the biotech manufacturing environment. Simple integration with image processing applications significantly elevated the manufacturer’s ability to maintain the highest quality standards in their production processes.

With Brainboxes PoE Gigabit Ethernet switches at the core of the vision system, the biotech manufacturer witnessed a substantial improvement in operational efficiency. The once complex network of cables on the production floor transformed into a streamlined system, whilst the scalability of the switch range will accommodate future growth, enabling the integration of additional devices without disrupting existing infrastructure.

Power management complexity

Managing power for multiple devices leads to increased installation challenges and maintenance efforts. Brainboxes PoE Gigabit switches, with their automatic PoE negotiation and centralised power management, offer a solution that simplifies installations. This not only addresses power management complexities but also streamlines the overall installation and maintenance processes.

Infrastructure complexity and maintenance

Cluttered setups, multiple plugs, and frequent maintenance checks (including EICR and PAT tests) are common issues in the manufacturing environment. The switches eliminate the need for numerous AC adapters and reduce the points of failure. Designed for easy integration, Brainboxes’ switches also ensure compatibility with various components and systems, resulting not just in enhanced connectivity but a cleaner, more efficient infrastructure.

Cost and resource efficiency

Balancing the need for advanced features and capabilities with budget constraints is a perpetual challenge. Brainboxes PoE Gigabit Ethernet switches are a cost-effective solution, providing the necessary features without compromising on performance, aligning with the biotech manufacturer’s commitment to efficiency within budget constraints.

Reliability and downtime

System downtime can significantly impact overall operational efficiency. Efficient power management not only ensures streamlined installations but also actively works to reduce downtime. This reliability becomes a key factor in maintaining the continuous operation of the vision system, contributing to the overall efficiency of the vision systems.

For the biotech company, vision systems play a crucial role in various tasks, and the deployment of PoE Gigabit Ethernet switches has significantly improved the efficiency of these systems. Addressing the challenges of power management complexity, infrastructure clutter, budget constraints, and system reliability, Brainboxes’ switches have become integral to optimising and maintaining continuous operations and contributing to the overall reliability and efficiency of the vision systems.


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