for keeping chemicals in line
University of Leeds is to head a project keeping chemicals
on their best behaviour, in a £3.5m collaboration with
two universities and eleven industrial sponsors.
behaviour Professor Kevin Roberts (right)
and co-researcher Dr Xiaojun Lai)
chemicals behaving badly (CBBII) project,
led by Professor Kevin Roberts, aims to identify ways
of controlling the production of chemical compounds, from
laboratory scale through to full industrial production
in the pharmaceutical and agrochemical sectors.
Roberts said: "Many modern chemical products, such as
advanced drug compounds, are highly complex and hence
difficult to process in large manufacturing plants to
a standard demanded by consumers and regulators.
compounds characteristics in terms of particle
size, form and distribution can have a profound
effect on later stages of production, when the chemical
is turned into medicines, or agricultural products. Our
research will enable manufacturers to effectively control
the process and therefore the outcome."
CBBII project, run at the universities of Leeds, Heriot-Watt
and Newcastle, builds on the success of CBBI also
led by Professor Roberts which developed new sensor
methods and an embryonic control system. The researchers
will work as one team, hotdesking between the three institutions.
second phase will improve the accuracy of monitoring the
compound during production, and ensure the effectiveness
of monitoring techniques on an industrial scale.
behaving badly is partly funded by the EPSRC and DTI through
grants to the three universities, and partly by the University
of Leeds and sponsors ranging from large pharmaceutical
companies to SMEs.