This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
technology | Medical

Right: Arburg’s Freeformer additive

manufacturing system has been used to

create cranial implants in PLA

and cranial bones. I believe that other applications exist, such as individually adapted implants and aids or orthotics. Another interesting option in this context is the possibility of combining injection moulding and additive manufacturing to individualise mass-produced parts in single-unit batches.” Kitzlinger also sees huge potential for development

of plastic products that perform functions within the body in the form of medical implants. “One example of this is the production of a vaginal ring for HIV preven- tion. In this case, Arburg acted as primary contractor for the entire production cell. An encapsulated stainless steel clamping unit was used to adapt the machine to the highest hygiene requirements in accordance with ISO 13485, as well as the specifications of the FDA and the GMP directives,” he says. Arburg cites miniaturisation as a major area of

Below: This turnkey pipette manufacturing system is built around an Arburg Allrounder 520A medical moulding machine

technical interest in the medical sector today. Other important aspects include minimally invasive interven- tion with reduced pain, and resorbable components that remain in the body for a defined period of time and that dissolve when they are no longer required. These applications increasingly require extremely small parts and micro implants that pose corresponding challenges for reliable, high-precision production. For example, Arburg offers a complete micro-production cell for the reproducible production of micro components that can be deployed flexibly as and when required. This includes a small electric Allrounder 270 A injection moulding machine equipped with a Euromap size 5 micro injection unit and a horizontal double-arm robot for reliable separation of micro components and sprue. The micro injection unit combines a 15mm or 18mm screw for melting the material with an 8mm screw for injection. This enables problem-free processing of normal granule sizes, expanding material options for device developers.

Cost pressures In terms of processing, the medical sector shares some basic demands with the packaging industry, according to Kitzlinger. “Cost pressures are high in areas such as

personal care. The focus is on maximum efficiency in the production of mass-produced items. The packaging versions of our hybrid Allrounders are designed for fast, high-quality high-volume production and, therefore, are also perfect for production of pipette tips, syringe barrels, closures and other thin-walled mass-produced items. They feature short cycle times, reproducibility, reduced energy requirements, as well as process stability and a long service life. At K2016 we will be highlighting a high-speed application for the medical technology sector, in which a cleanroom version of an electric high-performance Allrounder 470 A will be used.” Arburg says there is an ongoing demand for turnkey

medical systems and cleanroom solutions that can be tailored precisely to customer needs. For example, one project built around a GMP-compliant stainless steel electric Allrounder 520 A and complex mould automa- tion from Switzerland-based Tanner produces 64 pipette tips in a cycle time of around 4.5 seconds. The process also involves 100% quality control before automated placement of tips in trays of 96 parts each. “The manufacture and packaging of ready-to-use

dental drills made from PEEK under cleanroom conditions is another example of how subsequent processing steps can be integrated,” says Kitzlinger. “An electric Allrounder 370 A ensures maximum precision and adherence to the required tolerances, producing two of these dental drills in a cycle time of around 30 seconds. In the cleanroom cell docked to the machine, a six-axis robot sets the articles down with positional accuracy into blister packs. These are individually perforated, printed and removed by means of a conveyor belt. There is, therefore, no need for finishing work or sterilisation prior to use, making the entire process highly cost-effective.” According to Kitzlinger, future developments will see

traceability and risk assessment playing an increasingly important role in medical technology, with Industry 4.0 and its powerful data collection and communication

14 INJECTION WORLD | September 2016

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60