Simone Hogan/Dreamstime
Anaheim Convention Center

MD&M West, Day 3: A New Dimension in Medical Manufacturing

Aug. 11, 2021
As metal 3D printing continues to gain steam, the medical device industry must confront safety and efficacy concerns related to the novel materials employed. A panel discussion scheduled for this afternoon will help attendees chart the way forward.

As one 3D printing executive stated on the floor of the MD&M West in Anaheim on Tues., Aug. 10, “3D printing is over the hump in terms of acceptance.”

The medical device industry was among the early adopters of 3D printing. It offered new ways to develop patient-specific solutions for both implants and prosthetics. As more exotic materials were developed, the medical device industry again led the way forward. With the advent of metal 3D printing, the medical device industry is facing concerns similar to those in other industries: the safety and efficacy of these new metal filaments and powders.

A panel discussion on Wed., Aug. 11 at 12:30 p.m. PST will look at overcoming quality and safety challenges when printing with metal.

Topics include:

  • Important safety hazards and potential long-term problems that can come from exposure to heated filaments and metal powders
  • The need for rigorous quality assurance testing and inspection
  • Case examples of industry better practices when working with metal equipment and powders

Speakers include:

  • Paul Bates, an additive manufacturing lead project engineer for the standards organization ASTM International. Bates works in the ASTM Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence. Before joining ASTM, Bates was the manager for Facility Safety and Workforce Development in Additive Manufacturing at UL and worked for more than 20 years at Reebok.
  • Matt Donovan, who leads implementation of Metal Additive Manufacturing at Jabil, supporting aerospace and defense projects at Jabil’s facility in western Colorado, as well as supporting medical additive implant production in Albuquerque. He also is vice chair of an ASTM committee for standards in AM technologies.
  • Shannon VanDeren is president of Layered Manufacturing & Consulting and has been a 3D printing advocate since 2010. She has led the Medical Track for the Additive Manufacturers Users Group (AMUG) since 2015, and is also an appointed industry liaison for the AMUG group. In 2017, she was awarded the Distinguished Innovators Award (DINO) by her peers.

New Dimensions on the Show Floor

Despite the uncertainty around COVID restrictions, the opening day of MD&M West and its affiliated events was greeted with hopeful enthusiasm. The excitement about engaging with their industry colleagues—particularly those they hadn’t seen in the 2 ½ years since the last event at the Anaheim Convention Center—carried the opening day visitors through the show floor.

There were signs of safety at every turn and plenty of masks, but there also were contacts made and relationships renewed and created that aren’t possible in a teleconference. People also had to dress a little less casually, but no one seemed to mind. It felt like business as much like usual as we have right now, and there was excitement in what the show’s second day would bring.

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