Process Analytical Chemistry and Technology

Course content

Process Analytical Chemistry and Technology (PACT) encompasses a combination of analytical chemistry, process engineering, process chemistry, process spectroscopy and multivariate data analysis – a true multidisciplinary field. The key aspects of PACT include advances in measurement technologies that are applicable for at-line or on-line, real-time, process analysis research or applications.

The use of PACT enables one to gain a deeper understanding of the process (dairy, brewing, other food products, pharmaceuticals, etc.). This in turn can lead to more consistent food products, reduced waste, improved manufacturing efficiencies, overall improvement in the use of resources, improved safety, and the reduced costs that can be garnered from each of these.

Measurements can be made to give a direct indication of reaction progress or the composition of a mixture at a given time. This information about the process can be used to make changes to keep a process running within pre-set limits. With additional process information, and knowledge, there is the possibility of understanding the parameters that impact a process and the product quality (e.g. fat content in cheese, alcohol content in beer, water content in freeze dried products, API in tablets, etc.).


MSc Programme in Food Science and Technology

Learning outcome

The objective is to learn scientific approaches to solving PACT problems. The course will show the student how the individual competences (i.e. analytical chemistry/spectroscopy, process engineering/control, process chemistry, and multivariate data analysis) contribute significantly to PACT.

Apart from learning scientific approaches to solving problems, the student will learn to appreciate knowledge of: problem definition, process description, and validation.

When the course is completed, the student is expected to:


  • Describe fundamental process control theory in relation to monitor and control industrial processes.
  • Describe process sampling and instrument interfacing in relation to extracting, handling, storing and presenting process material for spectroscopic measurements and reference analysis.



  • Plan and execute a scientific analysis of an industrial process.
  • Evaluate, monitor, control and optimize industrial processes.
  • Identify critical control points.
  • Ability to utilize spectroscopy in processes (fibers, probes etc.).
  • Ability to utilize other/non-spectroscopic on-line measurement systems
  • Handling of process data (chemometrics).
  • Ability to utilize process data into manufacturing information systems.



  • Perform academic work with respect to PACT principles, and advice industrial projects in PACT implementations.
  • Critically assess relevant scientific literature and be able to discuss the need for PACT in industry from an academic point of view.

The course is structured around single-week and bi-week modules with identifiable subjects, including lecture-seminars, one bi-weekly module with practical’s, company visits.

The module structure will be announced at the start of the course and reading material (both in preparation of the module-subject and as post-module reading material will be uploaded before the start of each new subject).

The practical include small lab-experiments and an introduction to process-instrumentation. The lecture-seminars will include a theoretical, generic part (e.g. time-series data analysis) and several cases/examples from literature. The course includes excursions to industry where PACT is used on a daily basis and external/visiting lectures from industry.

The students will make an individual project-report with focus on relevant PACT topics. Each student, in agreement with the teachers, selects one topic. The selected subject will also be presented by the student to all course participants near the end of the course.

Literature/weekly reading assignment will be announced via Absalon; all materials are (freely) available via the digital library system.

Qualifications within the field of advanced chemometrics, quantitiative bio-spectroscopy, design of experiments and optimization and food process equipment is recommended.

Academic qualifications equivalent to a BSc degree is recommended.

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Feedback by final exam (In addition to the grade)
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Oral examination, 20 min
Examination in curriculum (no preparation time)

After the oral examination an overall grade will be given to the student based on the project report and the oral examination.
Weight: Project report 50% and oral examination 50 %

The project report and the oral examination must both be passed in order to pass the course.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

See Learning Outcome

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 70
  • Preparation
  • 55
  • Practical exercises
  • 20
  • Excursions
  • 30
  • Project work
  • 30
  • Exam
  • 1
  • English
  • 206