Grantek Develops an Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) to Deliver Tracking and Management of Vial Inventory at a Radioisotope Facility

May 25, 2023

Grantek Case Study

Grantek was approached by a leading radioisotope facility to develop an automated vial inventory and tracking system utilizing an Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS). The facility required a solution that would accurately track and manage their extensive inventory of vials containing radioactive isotopes through various stages of dosing, potting, and storage. Grantek took on the challenge to design a customized system that would meet the client’s specific needs. However, we encountered several challenges along the way.

One of the primary challenges we faced was thoroughly discussing and understanding the client’s requirements for the final system. The team needed to understand the process flow intimately to develop the user interface to collect, store, and present the inventory in an efficient and user-friendly way which all the client’s needs for reporting and audit tracking. We conducted numerous meetings, consultations, and demo presentations to gain a comprehensive understanding of their requirements and expectations for the final system.

Another significant challenge was coordinating and collaborating with multiple vendors responsible for the nuclear instrumentation, in-cell controls, and robotic systems. This included the mass scales required for accurate vial measurements, dose readers for radiation, and the ASRS robotic cell. Effective communication and coordination were crucial to ensure that all vendors were aligned and working towards the same goal. We facilitated regular meetings and consultations to ensure compatibility and integration of all system components.

Storing information in an efficient and scalable manner was another challenge we encountered. Given the extensive inventory of vials, it was essential to design a system that could handle the current data load and allow for future expansion. We developed a well-documented and robust database architecture capable of efficiently storing information. The SCADA project was also designed with the intention that other product lines or sites could be added in the future. This ensured seamless data management and the ability to scale the system as the inventory was needed.

Despite the challenges faced, Grantek successfully designed and implemented an automated vial inventory system for the radioisotope facility. By thoroughly understanding the client’s requirements, collaborating with multiple vendors, and developing an efficient and scalable information storage solution, we achieved the client’s goals of accurate tracking and management of their vial inventory. The implemented system streamlined operations, enhanced safety, and provided the foundation for future expansion as the facility continues to grow. There are plans to expand this system to include a new radioisotope line in the future.

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