Optomec helps University Nebraska-Lincoln to print magnesium medical components | Automation.com

Optomec helps University Nebraska-Lincoln to print magnesium medical components

Optomec helps University Nebraska-Lincoln to print magnesium medical components

September 11, 2018 - Optomec, a global supplier of production-grade additive manufacturing (AM) systems for 3D Printed Metals, unveiled details of how the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) is using a LENS Hybrid Controlled Atmosphere System to develop dissolvable magnesium components that will have implications in the design and manufacture of next-generation medical implants. This work is intended to enable 3D printed, patient-specific implants with controlled time to dissolve eliminating the need for second surgeries and thus also reducing risks, costs and suffering for patients.

By using the LENS Hybrid Controlled Atmosphere System to print patient-specific magnesium implants with a controlled time to dissolve, Dr. Sealy’s team is hoping to eliminate the need for second surgeries and thus also reducing risks, costs and suffering for patients.

Powdered metals such as magnesium, titanium and other reactive materials must be processed in a controlled atmosphere environment where oxygen and moisture impurities are maintained below 10 parts per million.  Dr. Sealy used the Optomec LENS 3D Hybrid Controlled Atmosphere System to process these materials in a way that addresses a key scientific challenge:  how to maintain the strength and integrity of a degradable implant long enough for it to do its job. Partnered with Sentient Science, Dr. Sealy is also investigating innovative hybrid processing techniques of 7000 series aluminum for the Navy.

The LENS Hybrid CA System enables Sealy and his team to couple LENS deposition technology with layered surface treatments to print 3D metal components in magnesium with controlled degradation.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is working in hybrid additive manufacturing and recently established the Nebraska Engineering Additive Technology (NEAT) Labs to create a regional hub for additive manufacturing research and innovation that enables collaborations among academia and industry.

The Optomec LENS 3D Hybrid Controlled Atmosphere System is an atmosphere-controlled system for additive and subtractive processing of metals, including titanium and aluminum. Optomec LENS hybrid technology combines a CNC automation platform with LENS technology, to bring metal additive manufacturing capabilities to industrial markets.  This week, Optomec announced the LENS 860 Machine Tool Series which have larger build volumes and support higher laser power.
 

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