Showcase Swiss Medtech Expo 2021

From titanium powder to hip implants

In an article recently published in Empa's magazine "Empa Quarterly", it is clearly shown how it goes from a pile of titanium powder to finished printed acetabular cups.

In this photo series, our experts Marco Flury and Patrick Stämpfli show which steps are necessary in the process chain - from a CAD to the 3D printed implant.

The printed implant is an acetabular cup, which is inserted in patients for a new hip joint. The acetabulum is part of the pelvis and encloses the femoral head, which is located at the top of the thigh bone. When an artificial hip joint is placed, both the acetabulum and the femoral head are replaced with implants - a procedure called total hip arthroplasty. 

In this photo report, the manufacture of the acetabulum with additive manufacturing serves as a simple showcase that demonstrates the essential production steps. In this example, the advantages of additive manufacturing can be clearly demonstrated.

Click here to get to the photo report:

  1. Lattice structures to promote bone ingrowth (forms an optimal interface with bone cells and allows the bone structure to grow into the implant).
  2. Reduction of manufacturing steps
  3. Possibility of individual patient adaptation