Pharmaceutical manufacturing is evolving very quickly. The US Government has indicated a significant interest in bringing back pharmaceutical manufacturing to the US. To create a sustainable pharmaceutical manufacturing industry, we need to use advanced manufacturing technologies that are more efficient, less expensive, and able of better quality. Continuous manufacturing, Process Analytical Technology (PAT), and closed loop control are essential building blocks for these manufacturing methods. Process modeling and the recently enhanced process understanding are required components to build these systems. Discrete Element Method (DEM), as the only modeling method able to describe powder physics at the particle level is the indispensable engine needed to achieve the required in-depth understanding of these complex systems used to make modern drugs. This talk will examine the pursuit and future role of DEM in understanding the powder-based pharmaceutical manufacturing process.