Additive manufacturing (AM) in medicine continues to grow each year. It is a remarkable enabler, but the industry is fraught with barriers to adoption, slow for the sake of patient safety.
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Should the US Copyright Office oversee whether 3D printer operators can use feedstock not approved by their machine’s maker to turn out medical devices or airplane parts, or is that the role of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), respectively?
Using 3D printing, or additive manufacturing (AM), in health care is on the rise, with the market expected to be worth nearly $26 billion by 2022. This growth goes well beyond just prototyping, as AM is already used throughout the industry to solve problems and improve care.
Formlabs was founded by MIT researchers in 2011, when high-quality 3D printing was inaccessible for most. We’ve now shipped over 50,000 machines while cementing our mission to “expand access to digital fabrication, so anyone can make anything.”
Tool presetting machines are a wise investment for machine shops that want to increase their machine utilization. Idle machine tools are often indicators of inefficient machining operations, and stopping a machine tool for any reason is synonymous to losing profits.
Additive manufacturing (AM) once was called “rapid prototyping.” Its earliest forms made prototype parts—and nothing else. However, manufacturers were intrigued by the prospect of using it to make cost-effective metal parts in production. That day is here.
Years ago, when I worked in New York City, I bought a Sony Walkman for my daily commute. It was cutting edge technology and I was an early adopter. I imagined that I looked pretty cool, listening to tunes I organized myself on a mix tape. Fast forward to today, where music is everywhere, on every conceivable device.
There have been many process improvement trends in manufacturing over the decades, and none have had more significant ROI than machine monitoring. The increase in machine monitoring is owed in large part to the rise in popularity of the open and royalty-free interconnectivity standard MTConnect.
Mayo Clinic’s 3D Anatomic Modeling Laboratory is inventing how to use 3D printing for surgical planning and instruction. People undergoing new, uncommon or complex surgeries at Mayo Clinic may benefit from access to the clinic’s expertise in 3D anatomic models. The models the lab builds also helps with patient and medical education.
As 3D printing becomes integral to modern manufacturing operations, it must become integrated into supporting enterprise systems and interwoven with the latest industrial manufacturing methods