ABB Robotics partners with XtalPi to create smart automated labs.

ABB Robotics and XtalPi have formed a strategic partnership to create intelligent automated laboratories in China. These automated laboratories will enhance the efficiency of R&D processes in biopharmaceuticals, chemical engineering and chemistry, and new energy materials. The collaboration aims to advance lab research and development through automation that works alongside humans. The partnership will benefit the pharmaceutical and biotech industries by enabling faster and more cost-effective drug development, contributing to disease prevention and healthier societies.

XtalPi is focused on driving intelligent and digital transformation in the life science and chemicals industries. The company previously purchased over 100 GoFa cobots to establish automated laboratory workstations in Shanghai. This year, XtalPi launched the automation-centric brand XtalPi Intelligent Automation, using GoFa cobots to automate processes involved in drug and materials development. The automated workstations are customizable and can complete various experimental steps. ABB’s GoFa cobots handle manual tasks, working continuously to accelerate experimentation. The large amounts of data generated by these automated laboratories will optimize the research cycle and facilitate AI-driven science.

The GoFa cobots are utilized for various functions, including preparation, dilution, filtration, reaction, UPLC testing, glovebox manipulation, sample warehousing, and automated guided vehicles (AGV) for transportation between workstations. These cobots can operate in challenging environments such as glove boxes, performing tasks with minimal supervision, such as opening lids, handling liquids and samples, and magnetic stirring. Automated sample warehouses equipped with GoFa cobots provide efficient storage and retrieval of laboratory reagents, streamlining the process. Through the collaboration with ABB, XtalPi aims to integrate robotics and automation into the pharmaceutical industry, automating the R&D process and laboratory operations.

This partnership represents ABB Robotics’ latest venture in the lab automation market, which is predicted to grow from $5.1 billion in 2022 to $7.1 billion in 2028. The introduction of intelligent automated laboratories will enhance productivity and efficiency in research and development, contributing to advancements in the field of life sciences and materials.