OPPORTUNITY: Client seeks potential partners with the capability to support one or more of the following: Proof of concept leading to commercial scale-up, joint development, licensing, or supplier agreement
Phase 1 - Initial discussions under NDA (Q3/Q4 2015)
Phase 2 - Proof of concept (by Q1 2016)
Phase 3 - Scale up to industrial operations Q2 2016
To be determined based upon the nature and scope of the proposed solution. Funding up to US$50,000 is available for top respondents to demonstrate proof of concept.
RFP was closed on
Improving Sanitary Clean-In-Place Efficiency for High Viscosity, High Particulate Materials Processing
NineSigma, representing a leading North American contract manufacturer and custom formulator for the Consumer Goods Industry, invites proposals for novel technologies to increase the speed and reliability of clean-in-place operations for industrial processing equipment involving high viscosity, high particulate material streams. Proposals describing novel improvements to processes, hardware, and/or software, as well as component solutions such as coatings or surface modifications are of significant interest.
NineSigma’s client manufactures a range of over-the-counter (OTC) and non-OTC products that are characterized by temperature sensitivity, high viscosity and high particulate content. To ensure compliance with regulatory standards, all products are rigorously monitored for bacterial contamination and chemical impurities. These products are processed within a closed system that requires cleaning at regular intervals to prevent cross-contamination and microbial build-up. Current clean-in-place protocols can require upwards of 90 minutes to complete, and often multiple cycles are required to ensure no residual contamination resides within the lines.
The client has conducted thorough optimization efforts to streamline the efficiency of these cleaning processes. However, they are acutely aware that viable technologies may exist within other industry verticals that could have significant impacts on both cleaning time and efficiency in their operations. Examples of such improvements might include – but are not limited to:
Surface treatments to eliminate adhesion of residual product inside equipment
Sensors to allow more efficient in-line monitoring of contamination profiles
Hardware or equipment innovations to streamline the cleaning process
Automation and control system solutions
Novel cleaning methodologies or processes from other industry applications
Potential partners with technology proposals from across the landscape of industry, academia, research and consulting are invited to respond.
Anticipated Project Phases or Project Plan
Proof of concept
Based on laboratory testing, the technology proposed will demonstrate a measurable improvement in the timing or efficiency for cleaning high viscosity, high particulate materials from processing systems.
The technology should perform such that testing for bacterial contamination and chemical impurities provides negative results.
Prototype testing leading to single installation and eventual plant-wide adoption.
Key Success Criteria
The successful technology will:
Achieve one or more of the following objectives:
Significantly reduce clean time from baseline
Current baseline: >45 minutes per cycle
Reliably limit the number of cleanings needed to eliminate contamination to one (1) cycle
Reliably limit the need for recurrence of cleaning by extending the current 5-day cleaning interval requirement up to 14 days
Be compatible with or adaptable to:
Low to high viscosity materials
Viscosity range: 1000 to 40000 cp
Zero to high particulate materials
Size range: 0.01 mm to 2.0 mm size range
Percentage by weight: Up to 1%
Particulate shapes include flake, cylindrical, spherical
Measurably improve upon the cleaning process as it applies to one or more of the following components in the current processing line:
Lines, hoses, valves, etc.
Meet FDA compliance requirements in the end application
The ultimate target for this application is a system-wide clean time of 15 minutes or less to optimize operational efficiency. The client welcomes component solutions or combinations of solutions that enable incremental – but measurable – improvements towards achieving this target.
Possible approaches might include, but are not limited to:
Technologies and equipment that can be applied from other manufacturing or processing applications across industry
Food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, aerospace, electronics and semiconductors, etc.
Coatings or surface treatments to prevent adherence of materials, particulates, microbes, etc.
Novel cleaning methodologies, such as ultrasound, UV, etc.
Automated systems for cleaning-in-place operations
Control systems for cleaning-in-place operations
Sensors to monitor cleanliness / contamination profiles on-line
Approaches not of Interest
The following approaches are not of interest:
Proposals based upon standard process optimization consultations
Technologies that require full cleanroom conditions for operation
Technologies that are not industrially scalable
Any solution that cannot meet FDA compliance requirements in the end application
Any solution requiring significant PPE (e.g. SCBA)
Items to be Submitted
To respond, please make sure you are registered in NineSights, as it will prompt you to log in. Then, use the Response options at the top or bottom of the page. You may submit supplemental files in addition to your completed response form.
Appropriate responses will use the response form and address the following:
Non-confidential description of proposed technology
Technical maturity of the approach (concept, prototype, ready to commercialize, commercialized)
Compatibility of the proposed solution with the requirements outlined in the “Key Success Criteria” section above.
Discussion of how to resolve unmet Success Criteria.
Performance data, if available and applicable
Budget / Cost information, if available
Team / Organization description
Relevant expertise, experience or background related to the RFP topic area
Desired relationship with the RFP sponsor
APPROPRIATE RESPONSES TO THIS REQUEST
Responses from companies (small to large), academic researchers, other research institutes, consultants, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, or inventors are welcome.
Up to US$50,000 is available to demonstrate proof of concept
Area of Interest
Biology-Cell and Developmental
Nanoscience and Nanotechnology > Surface Science > Surface Science-All disciplines