Artificial Intelligence, F&B Quality, Safety and COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic initiated a drastic change in consumer confidence and purchasing habits while redefining the approach to how select businesses approach their supply and demand for goods & services. The food and beverage, manufacturing and industrial processing industries continue to experience, respond to and rebound from these unexpected changes all while navigating a yet to be defined new normal. Now, more than ever, consumers are heavily invested in food safety as well as supply chain traceability.

The pandemic has exposed weaknesses across the value chain and many players in F&B that were not looking to invest in technology are now facing the reality that digitizing their operations is the only way to remain competitive in a post-COVID-19 landscape.

How COVID-19 affected buiness and operations... 
45% Demand increase 
40% Supply chain shortage 
37% Demand decrease 
33% Negative impact, but managing 
16% Has had little impact 
13% Having issues meeting higher demand 
10% Cashflow is a problem 
7% Business as usual 
•5th state of 2020

In a survey of food and beverage industry leaders conducted by PLEX systems, we can see that COVID-19 had a significant, and largely negative, impact on demand and the supply chain. These volatile changes in supply and demand were likely the worst at beginning of the pandemic in March of 2020, where uncertainty regarding lockdowns and safety were at their peak. Without the proper technology deployed and the reliance on traditional operating methods having to be redefined, these volatile swings are extremely difficult to rebound from and in effect cause ripples in the supply chain for extended periods of time.

Investing in technology, such as Artificial Intelligence, and more specifically Maestro, to address and stabilize this volatility is pivotal in the future for F&B manufacturers. The PLEX survey also showed that 10% of respondents had a cash flow problem as a result of COVID-19, which is a result of being unable to respond quickly to the unpredictable swings in demand and supply chain shortages. With Artificial Intelligence, corporations are able to be agile and nimble, responding quickly to changes in variable inputs and outputs to optimize operations and remain competitive. It’s clear that the F&B industry understands the necessity of investing in technology for the future.

Most food and beverage manufacturers say they 
still plan to invest in enabling technologies. 
Still planning to 
invest. 
Did not plan to invest, 
but are now. 
No longer planning 
to invest. 
•qt. An Stat. of of 7020

The PLEX systems survey also shows that 75% of respondents are going to invest in digital technologies as a response to changes driven by COVID-19. The top areas of investment for F&B manufacturers have shifted focused towards e-commerce as the drive for online purchasing has increased as well as supply chain upgrades, due to an increased importance on food safety. Supply chain upgrades, in particular, have been the key to their survival during this time when keeping up with extremely high food safety standards as well as trying to remain profitable has been critical.

Food safety has been a hot button issue, with many corporations like Perdue and other meat processors falling short to meet proper safety for employees, negatively impacting their production. Artificial Intelligence can address many of the safety issues for employees working within the factories as well as the quality of the actual products being produced. An example of this occurred within a poultry processing plant in Georgia, when a liquid nitrogen tank leaked and resulted in the death of six people in the plant. Investigators are having difficulties identifying which part of the operational process lead to the leak, something an end-to-end Artificial Intelligence Platform, such as Maestro, would address by taking into account the entire estate and being able to predict and prevent this events such as this from occurring.

Many F&B manufacturers and processors have been overwhelmed in their response to correct their course as a result of COVID-19. There has never been a more critical time for Artificial Intelligence to address this overwhelming condition as that is the true nature of what AI is capable of. The objective of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is to continuously ensure optimized outcomes with certainty, when so many dynamic variables impact operations that point-in-time analysis is irrelevant and the required speed, scale and depth of analysis is beyond human and standard algorithmic capabilities. This is the world we are living in as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Maestro AI is proven to deliver transformational benefit for the F&B manufacturing industry allowing clients to realize significant savings, while achieving safety and quality standards with unmatched speed to value. To learn more about Maestro AI and Elutions, contact us.

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Artificial Intelligence to Achieve Net-Zero in Food and Beverage

The facts of life are such that everyone has to eat and drink in order to survive. However, in a time where consumers are much more aware and selective of the Food & Beverage providers that they purchase from, the strain is being felt by suppliers of those products. The Pandemic also has made the industry even more volatile and it has become critical to ensure the supply chain remains uninterrupted.

Now, more than ever, consumers are requiring transparency regarding ingredients and health and safety considerations of all their food and beverage purchases. Many consumers don’t care solely for what their food and drinks are made of, but also about the Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) objectives of the providers and how these corporations are executing against these objectives.

Consumer interest in sustainable food choices increased by 23% in 2020 with less concerns regarding health and an increase in concerns around climate change, waste and recycling. Source: Tastewise

With consumers and suppliers demanding higher standards from the Food & Beverage industry, it is a daunting task to remain competitive in today’s market. However, with the implementation of Artificial Intelligence solutions to address the everyday business challenges, all of these seemingly difficult to achieve goals become significantly easier. This shift in the industry to becoming more transparent applies not only to ingredients and sourcing but also through publishing implementation of measures to achieve Net-Zero objectives, while also increasing quality and safety standards. A simple search for some of the world’s largest Food & Beverage corporations will provide a view into this increased transparency, with many having entire pages or websites worth of information on their Net-Zero objectives.

Net-Zero refers to the balance between the amount of greenhouse gas produced and the amount removed from the atmosphere.

National Grid

These initiatives have become increasingly important in the battle against climate change, though often highly politicized, with corporations in the United Kingdom and Europe currently leading the charge through their participation in setting national goals with the regards to the Paris Agreement. However, they aren’t the only ones as large multinational, U.S. based F&B corporations such as PepsiCo and Coca-Cola have been setting the Gold Standard for the industry in their race towards Net-Zero.

In January of 2021 PepsiCo announced plans to “more than double its science-based climate goal, targeting a reduction of absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions  across its value chain by more than 40% by 2030. In addition, the company has pledged to achieve net-zero emissions by 2040, one decade earlier than called for in the Paris Agreement.

Within their announcement, they detailed how they would achieve this goal, and the answer lies partially in technology, with an emphasis on “implementation and upgrading of environmentally sustainable manufacturing, warehousing, transportation and distribution sites,” and a corporate goal to “maximize efficiency in supply chain, while also adopting zero- and near-zero-emission technologies.”

PepsiCo is a behemoth in the industry with a holistic view and detailed strategy for achieving their ambitious international Net-Zero goals.

While the large players like PepsiCo and Coca-Cola may be leading the way, due to their significant global stage and highly publicized plans, other Food and Beverage manufacturers have certainly been and can continue to meaningfully contribute to international net-zero goals.

The UK has been making significant progress as they have a national goal of bringing all greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050. According to the Food and Drink Federation, the UK food supply chain is responsible for around 20% of UK greenhouse gas emissions. Inenco reports that, “a rate of around 3% annual reductions by the manufacturing sector is needed to meet the ambitious 2050 net-zero targets,” further illustrating that the food and beverage sector, which is the UK’s largest manufacturing sector, accounting for 15.6% of total manufacturing GVA, needs to lead the way.

As discussed in our previous article, the food and beverage industry face unique challenges in that margins are already razor thin, recovery from negative supply chain impacts from Covid-19 and the competition of a $6111.1 billion industry is staggering. All of these mounting pressures represent an opportunity for innovation and the implementation of innovative Artificial Intelligence technologies to the value chain. Artificial Intelligence, such as Maestro, presents a ready solution to tackle all of these industry pressures swiftly through process innovation that will result in value chain optimization with a host of benefits including increased resource efficiency, reduced waste and a whole lot more.

Focused entirely on maximizing clients’ profitability and sustainable growth, Elutions’ proprietary Enterprise AI platform, Maestro, delivers unprecedented benefits with certainty and at scale through autonomous and automated AI. Maestro’s neural network self-generates algorithms and implements directives without the need for human intervention, optimizing the entire value chain, and delivering benefits that continue to grow through a virtuous circle that sustains margin growth.

Maestro AI is proven to deliver transformational benefit for the F&B manufacturing industry allowing clients to achieve Net-Zero goals with increased speed to value. To learn more about Maestro AI and Elutions, contact us.

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February Series: The AI Enabled Food & Bev Revolution

The global food and beverage (F&B) manufacturing industry is a behemoth, valued at 6111.1 billion dollars as of 2020 and expected to grow at a CAGR of 7% for 2021 to reach an estimated value of $7527.5 billion in 2023. Even though COVID-19 created some pretty significant supply chain issues for the F&B market it still grew in an incredibly trying year. The industry is essential to our way of life and digital technologies are essential to the survival and growth of the industry.

Artificial Intelligence has the potential to unlock complete value chain transformation for F&B manufacturers. Mckinsey reports that, “50% of [F&B manufacturing] companies that embrace AI over the next 5-7 years have the potential to double their cash flow.”

The team at Elutions says, why wait that long?


F&B Manufacturers have never been in a better position then they are now to begin rapidly digitizing their operations with AI to reduce time to market, implement automation in feedstock to increase speed and reduce yield, to reduce resource consumption and achieve Net-Zero goals and so much more. In February 2021 Solve the Unsolvable will be exploring the applications of Artificial Intelligence in the Food and Beverage Manufacturing sector.

How can AI deliver on its promises within F&B? How can AI help corporations achieve their Net-Zero goals with increased speed? How can AI combat COVID-19 in the F&B Manufacturing sector and maintain food safety goals?


Stay tuned to this month’s series to have all of these questions and more answered.

Maestro AI is proven to deliver transformational benefit for the F&B manufacturing industry across the entire value chain at unprecedented speed to value. To learn more about Maestro AI and Elutions, contact us.

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Oil & Gas Giants: U.S. O&G Market: Shale, Policy Change & Artificial Intelligence

The United States’ Oil & Gas Industry has been steadily growing since the 2008 Recession – in large part due to the “Shale Revolution”. A Federal Reserve study showed that the shale industry was responsible for driving “10 percent of the growth in the U.S. economy’s gross domestic product from 2010 to 2015,” significantly aiding the United States’ rebound from the recession. The Shale Revolution has afforded the U.S. the opportunity to be less dependent on overseas oil and to drive growth in stateside natural gas production allowing the U.S. to rise to the top of the Liquified Natural Gas exporters globally.

As the U.S. continues to look away from imports and focus its efforts on domestic production for the future, all eyes are on shale. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, shale accounts for at least 40% of U.S. dry natural gas production.

FIGURE 1 
The shale revolution 
Permian • Appalachian • Eagle Ford 
Bakken 
Jan 
2012 
Haynesville 
• Anadarko 
Niobrara 
— Oil share 
O 
c 
o 
O 
O 
25 
20 
15 
10 
5 
0 
Jan 
2007 
US shale 
45 % 
40% 
35% 
30% 
25% 
15% 
c 
o 
O 
c 
o 
c 
u 
Jan 
2008 
Jan 
2009 
Jan 
2010 
Jan 
201 1 
Jan 
2013 
Jan 
2014 
Jan 
2015 
O 
Jan 
2016 
Jan 
2017 
Jan 
2018 
Jan 
2019 
production was 
10% of the world's 
daily oil 
consumption in 
2018. 
Economic value 
added by the US 
shales since 2006 is 
of Nigeria's 201 8 
GDP. 
Number of new firms 
that entered the US 
shale business in the 
past decade is 1.8)( 
of all newly listed 
companies on the 
LSE in 2018. 
O 
C02 emissions 
avoided due to the 
shale gas boom 
during 2006-18 is 
1.8)( of total 
emissions from South 
and Central America 
in 2018. 
Note: Economic value added by the mining sector in the United States is used as a proxy to highlight the economic impact 
of shales. 
Sources: US Energy Information Administration, Drilling Productivity Report, July 201 9; US Energy Information Administration, 
"US energy-related C02 emissions expected to rise slightly in 201 8, remain flat in 201 9," February 8, 201 8; IMF 201 8 World 
Economic Outlook. 
Deloitte Insights I deloitte.com/insights
Source: Deloitte

How have U.S. exports been impacted by COVID-19 as a whole?


Fortunately, the U.S. gas exports are less susceptible to volatile markets because of the nation’s swing supplier status coupled with contracts that allow for scrapped deliveries. World Oil reports that, “American gas exports are rising to fresh records every month as new facilities come online,” but particular attention must be paid to trade relations between the US & China as, “China is the fastest-growing LNG importer, and the U.S. is ramping up exports.”

However, the shale industry has not been entirely immune to the negative impacts of COVID-19, particularly decreased demand. Deloitte’s suggestions for navigating the great compression in shale oil production was for operators to, “work with their vendors to not only automate and digitize operations to realize new savings, but also to shorten value chains and create new pathways for the impending energy transition.” Automating and digitizing to realize savings is critical to the long-term success of the US as a top O&G exporter and, as a relative newcomer on the global O&G stage, the U.S. has the unique opportunity to be on the cutting edge with speed to adoption of digital. 


The change in administration, and President Biden’s ambitious efforts on climate change, represent a much bigger risk to U.S. Oil Production than the effects of COVID-19.


US oil production under a Biden government 
Million barrels a day 
— No drilling 
— With federal drdling 
201 q 
aoao 
2021 
aoaa 
2023 
SSP
Source: S&P

With President Biden’s impending plans to cut US oil production, in favor of more environmentally friendly and sustainable energy production, the U.S. O&G Industry must brace for economic and employment impacts. Supply constraints will cause a significant financial issue for producers as a result of President Biden’s suspension of “the sale of oil and gas leases on federal land, where the U.S. gets 10% of its supplies.”

How will producers be able to rebound from this supply and labor constraint?

They must turn to digital in order to extract savings from their existing value chain.

Deloitte reports that more than 70% of global traditional jobs in the O&G market that were lost as a results of COVID-19 may not return by 2021 if the industry does not make changes. According to oil industry leaders, Biden’s policy to decrease drilling activity in offshore federal waters will, “satisfy a few special interest groups [and will ultimately] end up producing more global emissions while killing thousands of high-paying American jobs.”

As we face increasing uncertainty around workforce conditions due to COVID-19, the need for process automation increases drastically. In order to cope with policy change and COVID-19, not just in the U.S. but also the global O&G industry, margin improvement and the future of work must be addressed through the implementation of Artificial Intelligence. 

Artificial Intelligence provides an immediate solution to workforce displacement for continued operations while implementing benefits such as downtime reduction and reduced fuel consumption.


Value chain optimization is key for the shale industry’s continued growth and ability to stabilize regardless of the current demand deficit and restrictions from President Biden’s administration. Aside from well-design, a popular area for mid-stream optimization efforts, there are a host of other measures that holistic Artificial Intelligence, like Maestro AI, can address within the mid-stream value chain. Maestro increases profitability in O&G by solving key operational challenges across the value chain through an unrestricted ability to dynamically observe, evaluate, compare and control real-time operational performance, ensuring maximized production that exceeds quality standards, increasing yield while minimizing resource consumption.

To learn more about Maestro and individual case studies in the Oil & Gas sector, please contact us

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Oil & Gas Giants: Amidst Market Volatility, LNG Market looks to Artificial Intelligence

The Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) market is increasingly being defined by its volatility. From increases in spot prices to intense commercial demand expectations, cargo cancellations, shipment delays and more, it is widely reported that, “unplanned maintenance at LNG export facilities from Australia to Qatar to Malaysia has led to a tighter than expected market in the second half of the year [2020].” This unplanned maintenance, combined with “pandemic prompted dramatic price swings” has led to the halt in growth in the LNG market in 2020. As a result, LNG has been looking to digital transformation to ramp up recovery, avoid stagnant growth and deliver on increasing market pressure.

While the cost of oil drops for consumers, due to social impacts of COVID-19, the LNG market is preparing for long-term implications. LNG is poised to experience more growth in comparison with the traditional use of oil and coal in consuming countries as the spot market has made LNG a more attractive option. Consumers have been incentivized by low LNG prices, relative to oil and gas prices, to make a switch.

Though the outlook for LNG growth in 2021 is quite strong at this point, the market is still unpredictable. LNG, in the position of a relative newcomer in respect to oil and coal, will benefit from swift implementation of digital in their early stages of growth. Gaining an even greater competitive edge in LNG is dependent upon digital adoption where speed to value becomes the most critical element in a technology deployment.

Source: Nobel Upstream

For years the LNG and larger Oil & Gas market have been turning towards digital technologies for their many benefits, not the least of which being promises of decreased costs and increased efficiency. However, they have never felt a more significant pressure to extract value from digital then what they are experiencing right now. Many O&G corporations that were early adopters have previously been failed by tech companies touting pie in the sky Artificial Intelligence platforms which merely turn out to be static algorithms at best. After a failure to deliver on hype and promised benefit, these tech companies have only left behind frustration and a distrust in AI’s true capabilities.

These early adopters can rest assured that the marketplace has seen a significant shift from the early days of promises and theoretical AI to concrete benefits in practiced AI. What was once seen as potential benefit is now being realized. As mentioned in the above graphic, making the best of existing technology, through the implementation of Artificial Intelligence which utilizes existing infrastructure, like Maestro, can yield significant cost savings. LNG producers, driven by everchanging costs, need to adopt Artificial Intelligence to survive in todays’ landscape.

The pandemic has been a great shock to the market but with this shock comes an exciting opportunity for change. Leaders have been given the opportunity to evaluate existing business strategies and identify opportunities for growth. LNG producers have the potential to extract significant financial value and increased profit from digital and further their growth position in the O&G market. Digital value chain transformation will afford LNG opportunities in increased flexibility and responsiveness of their production to market conditions. 

A critical element in the LNG and overall O&G journey to choosing a partner to adopt Artificial Intelligence with is the partner’s ability to deliver immediate value. Speed to value is driven by many factors but industry expertise, like that of Elutions’ Maestro, is paramount. To learn more about Maestro and individual case studies in the Oil & Gas sector, please contact us

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Crystal Ball 2021: AI Combatting Disruption due to COVID-19

Today’s world is increasingly surrounded by fear. Not just fear of COVID-19, but also of the unknown fears: loss of market share to a competitor, the creeping suspicion that businesses may be outperforming yours, everywhere, all the time. Business leaders need to grasp the understanding that the cost of doing nothing now, significantly outweighs the cost of taking action later.

It can be said with confidence that 2020 has been defined by COVID-19 and its impact to families, consumers and especially businesses in all industries around the globe.

Thus, our fourth and final prediction for Artificial Intelligence in 2021:

AI Combatting COVID-19 Disruption.

Crystal Ball Predictions 2021: This article emphasizes AI Combatting COVID-19 Disruptions

COVID-19’s disruption significantly impacted numerous industries, not the least of which include Chemical Manufacturing, Oil & Gas, Higher Education and more. Elutions continues to address COVID-19 related business challenges and more through Maestro’s AI capabilities. There is more pressure than ever on these corporations to make 2021 a year to rebound from demand, workforce reduction, production, shipping and more. The use of holistic end-to-end Artificial Intelligence, namely Maestro AI, provides a bright and ready solution for unmatched speed to value. 

There has never been a time in modern history like 2020 where the increasingly urgent necessity for immediate solutions to business quandaries has been met with an equally robust solution as Artificial Intelligence. In the consumer space, we see this with AI enabled chatbots as a solution to the increasing customer service demands of consumers who are now spending more time than ever online shopping.

But what about a solution to address the onslaught of shipping as a result of shifted consumer purchasing habits due to COVID-19? Maestro is leading the way, helping shipping companies optimize their process from the warehouse down to the delivery route.

Source: Gartner

For further proof that the market, as a result of COVID-19, is responding to AI in leaps and bounds, the above information from a Gartner study of IOT implementation stated that 47% of respondents will be increasing their plans to implement to reduce costs.

In the commercial space, the use of AI in the pharmaceuticals and healthcare industry is top of mind, especially with the fast-tracked COVID-19 vaccines. An already overwhelmingly positive impact of AI, due to COVID-19, is the ability to develop vaccines and medications with greater speed than ever before, leading to change in the entire process of how we develop and test new medications for the future.

But could AI be the “vaccine” all industries need to improve future demand forecasting, prevent future disruption and stabilize now?

The answer is a resounding “yes”.


The increased demand for Artificial Intelligence has already been observed in 2020 and the adoption of AI will be widely implemented in 2021. Let 2021 be a year of digital transformation with Elutions as your partner. To learn more about specific case studies of Maestro Artificial Intelligence applied, please contact us.

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December Series- A Look into the Crystal Ball: Artificial Intelligence in 2021

It’s hard to believe that another year has come and gone, given how strange 2020 has been, but here we are in December looking back on a trying year for many and looking forward to 2021. The team at Elutions, and Solve the Unsolvable, are looking into our Crystal Ball to make our predictions for Artificial Intelligence and the Digital Landscape in 2021. Get excited, because AI is trending up again in 2021.

Some of the large trends we see for 2021 include, a move away from discreet solutions to a holistic end-end approach, using AI as a digital leapfrog to reduce spending, using AI to address previously unsolvable problems, new use cases and finally AI as a way to continue to combat disruption from COVID-19.

A Look into the Crystal Ball: AI in 2021

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Artificial Intelligence and the Chemical Industry’s Rebound from COVID-19

It should come as no surprise that the Chemical Manufacturing Industry, like all industries, has experienced quite a shake up this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Global supply chain disruption, erratic spikes and lulls in demand, operational constraints and the nature of on-site jobs are just a few of many obstacles that the Chemicals industry faced as a result of the pandemic.

Let’s consider some chemical industry statistics that frame the impacts of these constraints on the global economy…


According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics from data in September 2020, Chemical Manufacturing companies employ roughly 838,000 people in the United States alone, of that 838k roughly 524,000 are production and nonsupervisory employees.

The below figures are according to statista.com: 

In 2019, the Chemical Industry represented a total worldwide revenue of roughly 3.94 trillion U.S. dollars, with China controlling a 35.8% share of the revenue.

The leading Global Manufacturer of Chemicals, based on a revenue of approximately 65.3 billion U.S. dollars, was German chemical company, BASF. They were also the leaders in the category of global employment with approximately 118,280 employees.

In the United Kingdom the chemical and pharmaceuticals industry represent the second largest industry and a significantly important part of the national economy.


Based on this small sample of statistics alone, it is very clear to see that the Chemical Manufacturing Industry represents a significant part of our global economy. The good news is that as we learn more about the virus and find creative strategies to combat it, including artificial intelligence applied in various ways, we are already starting to see the Global Chemical Production rebounding from some pretty significant losses.


Percent change in chemical production due to COVID-19 worldwide 
between January 2020 and August 2020, by region 
GIObal 
Africa & 
Middle 
East 
Chile 
Latin 
America 
Mexico 
North 
America 
India 
China 
Asia. 
Pacific 
Former 
Soviet 
union 
Belgium 
Italy 
France 
Europe 
January 
2020 to 
Februa ry 
-2.1% 
0.1% 
2.3% 
-0.4% 
-0.1% 
-6.4% 
-3.7% 
-0.9% 
0.5% 
February 
2020 to 
March 
-3.3% 
0.2% 
-2.5% 
-1.1% 
-7.2% 
-8.3% 
-5.4% 
2% 
-0.8% 
-2.1% 
0.2% 
March 
2020 to 
April 
0.1% 
-8% 
-3.4% 
-2.9% 
-2.6% 
-15.9% 
1% 
-0.4% 
-0.1% 
-5% 
-4.2% 
-2.3% 
April 
2020 to 
May 
-0.5% 
-0.9% 
-10.2% 
-4.9% 
-6.5% 
-2.3% 
-13.7% 
4.8% 
1% 
-3.3% 
-3.9% 
-3.1% 
May 
2020 to 
June 
2020 
1.6% 
-1.2% 
-6.7% 
-3.2% 
-1.9% 
1.1% 
6.5% 
3.3% 
3.7% 
0.9% 
0.2% 
June 
2020 to L 
July 
1.7% 
0.3% 
-1.9% 
0.5% 
-1.1% 
1% 
17.6% 
2.1% 
1.7% 
1.9% 
2.8% 
5% 
3.2% 
3% 
July 2020 
August • 
2020 
2.7% 
2.9% 
4% 
0.9% 
10.3% 
3.3% 
2.9% 
1.3% 
2.6% 
4.9% 
1.7% 
3.6%
Source: Statista

Global production is rebounding slowly, but surely, with a 2.7% uptick in production from July of 2020 to August of 2020 with the most significant increase coming from India after a pretty difficult downturn due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The rebound in this industry is pivotal to the health of our global economy, as illustrated by the statistics above which represent how important chemical manufacturing is.

What steps have the Chemical Manufacturers taken in order to begin rebounding quickly and contributing to our global economy?


Many Chemical Manufacturers have turned to Artificial Intelligence and Digitization in order to combat challenges presented by COVID-19 whether they are applying these technologies to part of their process or to their entire estate.

Let’s take the international race to find a vaccine as an example. Many corporations have worked together to use Artificial Intelligence to rapidly increase the ability to find a treatment. Dan Drapeau, Head of Technology at Blue Fountain Media, has posited that Artificial Intelligence, when applied in the capacity of finding a vaccine, has become “a necessity right now, because we’re in the middle of a global pandemic, and it’s vital for us to figure out a solution or vaccine therapy as soon as possible.

Mefuparib 
PARPI 
SARS-cov-2 
Toremifene 
Viral RNA 
NSP14 
RNA-dependent 
RNA polymerase 
Dexamethasone 
NR3C1 
Remdesivir 
AAKI 
Melatonin 
MTNRIA 
Baricitinib
Source: The Lancet
AI algorithms can be used for drug repurposing, which is a rapid and cost-effective way to discover new therapy options for emerging diseases.

Artificial Intelligence is a massive disruptor in the vaccination process in regards to reduction of time consumed by molecular analysis and how the molecules should be used in chemical binding to target the disease. In short, humans can’t possibly conduct analysis on the billions of different molecules as it would take far too much time that our global population just doesn’t have. AI has been able to automate this process for the pharmaceutical industry to increase capacity, help predict which drugs would most likely be successful and also decrease the amount of financial resources spent on clinical trials that might ultimately fail.

But Artificial Intelligence’s reach in the chemical industry only begins here and, as a result of the pandemic, it truly has become a necessity for corporations to survive and even thrive in the current environment.

Chemical manufacturers, as well as other industries, all over the world are partnering with Elutions in order harness the power of Maestro’s Artificial intelligence to combat the disruption that COVID-19 has created. Maestro, when applied to the chemical manufacturing process at an estate-wide level, has the ability to transform operations.

To learn more about Digitization and Maestro Artificial Intelligence, stay tuned for Friday’s (Oct. 23) article on Digitization and Quantifying the Impacts of Artificial Intelligence. Also, please read previous articles regarding our work using Artificial Intelligence to combat COVID-19.


Up Next for NCW: Digitization and Chemical Manufacturing


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AI & COVID-19: Safely Back to School

As we enter September, in one of the strangest years to date, COVID-19 has infiltrated nearly every facet of our everyday lives. When people leave their homes, it is normal to grab keys, cellphone, wallet and now a mask. For most, the changes have simply become the new routine. But one of the biggest disruptors caused by COVID-19 is in the return to campus for many college students. This results in colossal questions being asked, and one extremely important question:

How can we ensure the protection of our student-body, faculty and staff braving the return to college campuses across the globe?

Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) released that “…current evidence suggests that COVID-19 spreads between people through direct, indirect (through contaminated objects or surfaces), or close contact with infected people via mouth and nose secretions. These are released from the mouth or nose when an infected person coughs, sneezes, speaks or sings, for example.” We recognize that the spread of COVID-19 is an Airborne illness and yet, if colleges are to re-open this fall as many already have, how can we protect the integrity of the open, constructive in-person dialogue that many classrooms thrive upon? The answer exists, partially, in making the environment on campus the healthiest for all, limiting the spread of COVID-19.

According to the WHO, many reported outbreaks of COVID-19 share their occurrence in “closed settings, such as restaurants, nightclubs, places of worship or places of work where people may be shouting, talking, or singing.” Additionally, the lack of social-distancing in practice and lack of mask wearing increased the rate of the spread and we’ve seen in many States bars and restaurants closing again to contain outbreaks. One of the most important things to pay attention to regarding these outbreaks and the future spread is this statement from the WHO,

In these outbreaks, aerosol transmission, particularly in these indoor locations where there are crowded and inadequately ventilated spaces where infected persons spend long periods of time with others, cannot be ruled out.”

The World Health Organization

Beyond wearing a mask, social distancing and lowering the capacity of contained spaces, the physical environment of the classroom and broader spaces can have a profound effect on the virus’ ability to spread. We acknowledge that this is one of the keys leading to the decreased spread of COVID-19 on the College Campuses, increasing the safety for all. In fact, we are currently working with esteemed universities to prepare their shared spaces for the return of activity on campus.

For years, our team has followed the gold star of industry standard guidelines from the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and other international equivalents in our work on campuses and beyond. ASHRAE published a report in April of 2020 to rebut some false statements regarding HVAC and also put out a full statement with guidelines regarding the optimal HVAC conditions to decrease the spread of COVID-19.

In their reports, ASHRAE specifically stated the following, “Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 through the air is sufficiently likely that airborne exposure to the virus should be controlled. Changes to building operations, including the operation of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems, can reduce airborne exposures.” This is not only pivotal to the re-opening of college campuses but in all industries where offices are re-opening for example, busy sales floors at large corporations or call centers where many people are talking all day long in close quarters.

In relation to universities and colleges specifically, our team works with facilities teams to automate implementation of the guidelines set by ASHRAE’s Epidemic Task Force. The new guidelines for COVID-19 are vast and the automated implementation by Maestro allows for facilities teams to focus on non-COVID-19 related projects. While Maestro’s core remains to reduce operational and energy spend, our team is passionate about making the working environment as safe as possible for students, faculty and staff to return to this fall.

With Maestro, it is possible to return to safer classrooms and offices, all while achieving significant energy and maintenance cost reduction opportunities through automated, no-cost measures across the campus, eliminating the need for direct human interaction with the University’s assets.

Contact us to learn how Maestro can make your campus a safer place to return to.


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AI & COVID-19: Optimize

To maintain operations at the onset of COVID-19, corporations took swift, unprecedented action to counteract the pandemic’s sweeping impacts on market demand, workforce, supply chain, short-term costs and liquidity. For many corporations, this involved redirecting investment from long-term initiatives to short-term remedies. For others, expediting the execution of long-term strategies was critical to survival.

Corporations that chose to accelerate, rather than delay, their digital transformation initiatives are now leveraging Artificial Intelligence to enhance employee safety and security, reduce short-term costs and improve liquidity. In the mid-term, that same investment will allow them to stabilize revenue, further reduce OPEX, prioritize CAPEX, and lay the groundwork for competitive advantage.

How will Artificial Intelligence empower corporations to build resilience and optimize performance amidst supply chain disruption?

Elutions’ highly-automated and autonomous Artificial Intelligence solution, Maestro, integrates value chain systems and infrastructure to dynamically coordinate activity and optimize net performance, improving OPEX, CAPEX, yield and revenue.

The following Artificial Intelligence use cases are paramount to building resilience and optimizing performance in industry:

  • End-to-End Operational Alignment & Planning: By overlaying and interconnecting enterprise systems, assets and processes with AI and automation, corporations gain granular visibility and foresight into enterprise-level performance and risks, and unparalleled agility in aligning operational parameters, activities and decision-making across processes, enabling otherwise unachievable improvements in operating costs, yield and revenue.

  • Dynamic Process, UCP & Yield Optimization: By enabling dynamic, system-driven performance prediction and operating parameter adjustment at each stage of production, automated Predictive Preventative Maintenance work-order creation at the asset-component level, and automated alternate control sequencing in the event of a sensor, asset or process failure, corporations autonomously optimize process efficiency and product quality while avoiding unplanned downtime, minimizing the Unit Cost of Production, maximizing effective capacity, throughput and yield, and stabilizing revenue in line with design capacity.

  • Predictive CAPEX Planning & Budgetary Prioritization: By autonomously modeling asset health, availability and use-life, business-casing the margin impact of replacement vs continued O&M, and prioritizing CAPEX projects in line with their projected impacts on safety & security, uptime and margin, corporations plan and allocate CAPEX with unparalleled precision, efficiency and flexibility, optimizing IRR.

  • Value Chain Visibility, Scenario Modeling & Strategy Execution: By overlaying and interconnecting value chain systems and processes with AI, corporations gain unprecedented visibility and foresight into value chain performance and risks, certainty in strategic planning via scenario modeling, and oversight in execution, altogether allowing corporations to proactively manage rather than reactively respond to value chain opportunities and disruption.

Beyond mid-term resilience and performance optimization, corporations have placed their bets on Artificial Intelligence to thrive in the long-term. Stay tuned for more market intelligence on how AI is helping corporations gain competitive advantage.


Up Next for NCW: Digitization and Chemical Manufacturing


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