Beckhoff Expands Its Industrial PCs to Provide Edge Devices for Faster Packing Operations

October 12, 2021 by Stephanie Leonida

How is Beckhoff working with OPTIMA Packaging Group to provide them with data management capabilities and smart product traceability?

OPTIMA Packaging Group GmbH is a global leader in packaging technology across a range of sectors. The company is based in Germany and manufactures sterile filling and capping systems. 

OPTIMA provides machines for pharmaceutical products including sterile and non-sterile liquids, powders, pharmaceutical freeze-drying products, food, isolators, and chemical products. OPTIMA Pharma has been using Beckhoff’s ultra-compact control cabinet C6015 and C6030 Industrial PC to expand the digitization of drug filling capabilities. Beckhoff, a large company in PC-based automation technology, aims to provide the pharmaceutical industry with a more flexible and transparent mode of manufacturing to optimize product output.


Beckhoff’s C6030 and C6015 PCs

Beckhoff’s C6030 combines Intel Core-i processors with compact housing. The ultra-compact nature of the device means that the user can fit it in any area space within the control cabinet. The PC is designed for applications involving complex automation and visualization tasks, image processing, and handling large quantities of data and can be deployed within the IoT environment. 


industrial PC

Beckhoff’s C6015 Industrial PC. Image used courtesy of Beckhoff 


The C6030 is a single-board PC that has been adapted to provide more durability. Users can benefit from numerous mounting options for the rear panel of the control cabinet or the DIN rail. Users can integrate modular, functional extensions (in the form of a second board level) into the motherboard using an internal plug connector.


optima custom pc

Beckhoff's compact C6030 Industrial PC here is a custom-branded version with an Optima label. Image used courtesy of Beckhoff


The C6015 is currently Beckhoff’s most compact industrial PC with a mounting space of 82 x 82 x 40 mm. Like the C6030, the C6015 is a single-board PC, and flexible mounting is available. Unlike the C6030, the C6015 offers customers Intel Atom computing power which makes it suitable for use in industry 4.0 applications, such as an IoT gateway.


Key Benefits of Beckhoff's Industrial PCs

For OPTIMA, Beckhoff’s PCs were an easy choice because of their small size, range of ports, and ability to set up communication with all types of components, irrespective of what component is used. 



OPTIMA's packaging machine. Image used courtesy of OPTIMA Packaging Group


In the news release, the Director of Automation Technology at OPTIMA Pharma, Heiko Ellwanger, commented on Beckhoff’s PCs, stating that “their long-term component availability is hugely important for the pharmaceuticals sector as well. For all these reasons, we’re now using these ultra-compact Industrial PCs as remote gateways group-wide, throughout OPTIMA.”

In the same news release, Ellwanger added, “The ultra-compact C6030 Industrial PC is ideally suited to data management tasks like this. It has the variety of ports required as well as the computing power, with multiple cores, each clocking at up to 3.6 GHz.”

OPTIMA Pharma can match machine and production data to the individual product by using added smart features and Beckhoff’s PCs. This means that engineers can identify and remove potentially faulty products without discarding the entire production run. Beckhoff is hopeful that this operation can save money, time, and resources while maintaining plant productivity.