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3D Printed Robotic Exoskeleton and Bespoke Braces Win IDEA Awards

Published on July 4, 2014 at 6:09 AM

3D Systems announced today that two of its Bespoke design applications have been awarded by the 2014 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA) from the IDSA and Core77. Both the 3D printed personal Ekso robotic exoskeleton and Bespoke Braces for hand and wrist were recognized, with the Ekso being awarded Bronze in the Social Impact category.

Recognizing excellence in all areas of design enterprise, these Design Awards celebrate the richness of the design profession and its practitioners. By recognizing the design inspiration of 3DS' personalized medical device teams, the awards highlight the rapid progress being made in personalized healthcare for a variety of medical industries by 3DS.

"3D printing and scanning are allowing massive steps forward in the field of custom-designed braces that reflect and support a patient's unique form," said Andy Christensen, Vice President of Personalized Surgery and Medical Devices, 3DS. "The work and research being done by our teams represent the cutting edge in patient-specific treatments and it is satisfying to see that work being recognized for the design excellence that results."

Tad Toulis, IDSA, 2014 IDEA Jury Chair, said, "This year's IDEA jury had a fairly audacious task: judging more than 2,000 entries. We saw a lot of design work that any designer would have been inspired by. Your work demonstrated the kind of creativity and passion the jury believed represents the best our profession can aspire to. Congratulations on your win!"

Bespoke Braces for hand and wrist, currently in its pilot phase, is a first-of-its-kind medical solution to scan, design, and print custom hand and wrist braces. In the Bespoke Braces process, a patient's arm is scanned and data is transmitted to cloud-based servers where a brace design, customized by the patient and clinician, is created to match the shape of the patient's individual anatomy. Each brace is then 3D printed using 3DS' selective laser sintering (SLS) technology for optimal comfort, flexibility and durability. The Bespoke Braces system is comprised of an arm scanner, an iPad app, cloud software, a network of 3D printers, and four revolutionary arm brace designs. This service has recently been expanded to include custom scoliosis braces for children and young adults.

"This product is a strong example of when customization can be leveraged to its true potential, delivering an experience that is integrated, personal and strong application of additive manufacturing processes." – Core 77 Jury

The robotic exoskeleton announced by 3DS in February 2014 is the first-ever 3D printed hybrid robotic exoskeleton robotic suit, created in collaboration with Ekso Bionics. To create a perfect fit for Amanda Boxtel, the paraplegic patient, engineers scanned the contours of Amanda's thighs, shins and spine and created a personalized three-dimensional base to form the shape of the required assemblies. Sophisticated mechanical actuators and controls, manufactured and provided by Ekso Bionics, were then integrated with the more fluid components that were 3D printed from the customized scans to create the first ever bespoke suit. View Amanda's exoskeleton in action here.

To find out more about 3DS' vision of personalized surgery and medical devices, visit: http://www.3dsystems.com/solutions/healthcare

Source: http://www.3dsystems.com

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