Renishaw Demonstrates Additive Capabilities for Spinal Implants

Renishaw partnered with Irish Manufacturing Research (IMR) and nTopology to demonstrate the capacity of additive manufacturing (AM) to streamline the design of spinal implants. 

IMR, a manufacturing research organization, designed a representative titanium cervical spinal implant using generative design software from nTopology. IMR then created the implants using Renishaw's RenAM 500M metal AM system. The team designed a set of experiments to yield the most appropriate parameter settings for the implant, and as a result, reduced the amount of post processing required by a factor of ten.

Ed Littlewood, Marketing Manager of Renishaw's Medical and Dental Products Division, said, “An implant with a lattice structure is lightweight, can be optimised to meet the required loading conditions and has a greater surface area, which aids osseointegration. Therefore, AM implants can be designed to mimic the mechanical properties of bone, resulting in better patient outcomes. But all of this comes to nothing if you do not have the tools to create the design.”

“Traditional CAD tools weren't built to design complex lattice structures; the job would be difficult or even impossible,” said Matt Rohr, nTopology's Application Engineering Manager. “nTopology was designed to complement existing workflows...We cut the design time of complex structures from days to minutes which was a crucial component in helping this project run to schedule.”

Renishaw also uses its AM machines to produce craniomaxillofacial implants and dental frameworks at its site in South Wales.

Source: Renishaw