Our client, a leading multinational BioPharma company, had a
21,000 I/O facility in operation using Emerson Delta V 6.3.4 as the Manufacturing Control System (MCS), based on the
Windows NT 4 OS. Due to the risks around obsolence and support a project was instigated in 2007 to upgrade the OS to
Windows Server 2003 and the MCS to Delta V 9.3.
Zenith's scope was to perform the upgrade for all 5 manufacturing domains and 4 development systems on the customer's site on a staged basis.
The table below provides the key statistics relating to the MCS.
The scale and complexity of the project required detailed planning around two key areas : the adoption of a risk based approach to the upgrade from a technical perspective , and the logistics involved in physically installing and testing the software/hardware and implementing on site within the shutdown windows provided.
The risk based approach centred on an in depth review of all
Known Issues and Knowledge Based Articles ( KBA's) between the versions of Delta V involved. ZT developed a series of tools to search the configuration for specific issues arising from this review, and the potential impact of these was then assessed and remediated as part of the risk management process to the point of satisfactory risk transition. Rigid rules were established around configuration freezes and configuration management to ensure the optimum level of control was maintained at all times.
The hardware was free issued by the customer and assembled and tested offsite at Zenith's facility under closely controlled conditions. Close co‐operation with the end user was required at this point in order to facilitate offline testing.
A time constraint of 4 days per domain was imposed by the customers operations. This necessitated 24/7 working on behalf of the Zenith teams to meet the schedules, and required detailed hourly scheduling , careful planning and resourcing. The first domain cutover was completed on time and without any production impact, however by implementing a continuous improvement cycle on each successive shutdown, the shutdown window was ultimately halved to the point where the final domain was completed in 2 days.
The target was to complete the upgrade within the scheduled shutdown windows provided, such that no additional unscheduled lost production time occurred.
The MCS upgrade project was completed on schedule and budget with reduced cutover times and most importantly no lost time for production.
Client reference for this project can be provided on request.