Using PolyJet to advance science.
CTI has used Stratasys® 3D Printers since 2005. Today, it has two machines that run on FDM® technology — including a Fortus 3D Production System — and a Connex 3D Printer, which uses PolyJet technology. “We were pleased with the results provided by the FDM technology,” says Jorge Vicente Lopes da Silva, head of the DT3D. As the volume of projects grew, CTI wanted new equipment with new features. “We needed highly accurate, multi-material 3D printers; the Fortus adapts well to industrial applications and the Connex is useful in medical applications, in soft structures such as nerves and arteries.”
Jorge Vicente Lopes da Silva and Peter Yoshito Noritomi of Renato Archer used both FDM and PolyJet 3D printers to develop medical applications.
Prototyping a new skull.
The Connex 3D Printer is ideal for medical applications that require prototypes of soft anatomical structures such as arteries and nerves. “Depending on the material used, we can print more flexible objects.” An essential component of CTI’s medical applications is the InVesalius software, developed in the institute’s laboratories. In Vesalius can be downloaded for free at www.cti.gov.br/invesalius.
It is an open-source platform for reconstruction, in 3D format, of 2D images generated in studies made with computed tomography or magnetic resonance equipment. The center of a global community of researchers and users, and fully developed as an open platform, In Vesalius has been translated into 10 languages and is used in 100 countries by 10,000 people.
Renato Archer’s Information Technology Center also serves hundreds of area hospitals with its 3D printing capabilities.
The program supported 180 hospitals in 2012 and 2013 alone, throughout Brazil and in neighboring countries. Businesses small and large tap CTI and its 3D printers to validate their products and generate functional prototypes. For example, professionals from Petrobras and DT3D work side by side in petroleum exploration projects.
“The Petrobras team knows a lot about wells, while we have mastery of 3D technologies; the sum of these talents increases the competitiveness of our industry,” says Silva.