EOS is joining forces with
Innovative Medical Device Solutions (IMDS).
Together they offer customers extensive product development resources for
creating novel metal additive manufacturing (AM) designs.
This partnership will allow IMDS
to manufacture products with patient-benefiting features that are made possible
with the use of AM technology.
EOS offers experience designing
and manufacturing laser-sintering systems that can create high-quality
prototypes and end-use parts. IMDS specializes
in partnering with medical device customers to develop and produce new implant
and instrument systems. The company has recently added the latest-generation
EOSINT M 280 direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) systems to its product
development and manufacturing capabilities across the U.S.
In response to requests by major
medical product developers, EOS and IMDS have begun investigating partnerships
with leading companies to bring out products that could only have been imagined
For example, most titanium
implants are currently manufactured by subtractive machining, followed by
adding a porous coating. Now, some implants under development are being
built one 20-micron layer at a time on high-precision DMLS machines. Each
finished product is a functionally gradient single piece that transitions from
a precisely shaped porous structure to a less porous, more solid load-bearing
structure—a design with significant performance benefits that is not practical
to undertake with traditional processes. Other designs in development include
patient-specific surgical guides for placement of pins, saws, and drills.
In the long term, the partnership
will also provide orthopedic companies with a more cost-effective
design-to-manufacturing pathway for customized implants—for instance, ultrathin,
bone-conserving hip, knee, and shoulder joint bearing implants—digitally
designed from patient CT scans. DMLS can build medical products from regulatory
approved implant materials such as stainless steel, cobalt-chrome, or titanium