Partnership

IntellijointIntellijoint Surgical, an SME that develops surgical tools in Waterloo, ON.

Renishaw

Renishaw, a global leader in engineering and advanced manufacturing.

MSAMMulti-Scale Additive Manufacturing (MSAM) Lab is one of the largest research and development additive manufacturing facilities in the world, hosted at the University of Waterloo in Canada.

Challenge

  • Metal additive manufacturing (AM) can create customized components with lightweight materials and complex geometries not achievable with traditional manufacturing (e.g. CNC machining).
  • However, AM limitations can include poor surface finish, geometric distortion and suboptimal mechanical properties.

Solution

  • Researchers investigated commercially-viable hybrid manufacturing workflows to use CNC machining to refine features of AM components to meet precise requirements.
  • A prototype was developed for an intraoperative measurement tool for hip replacement surgery.
3D Printed Surgical Tool
3D printed surgical tool for hip replacement surgery.

Impact

  • Demands for customized high-value, low-volume components in fields such as medical and aerospace are necessitating novel manufacturing methods.
  • The results have lead to future work to refine AM design and CNC programing for hybrid manufacturing workflows.
  • The project represents a successful collaboration in the advanced manufacturing sector between MSAM, an Ontario SME (Intellijoint Surgical) and a MNE (Renishaw).
  • This project was featured at the COU Policy Discussion Series on Advanced Manufacturing.