Across the medical device sector there are many innovative applications of 3D printing that are benefitting manufacturers, healthcare professionals and patients. From rapid medical device validation to printing, we’ve collected some case studies of how additive manufacturing has enabled medical device developments while improving production times and reducing costs. The first example leverages the use of a state-of-the-art digital tool for materials development called Albert, who happens to share the same name as a well-known physicist!

Albert offers a cloud-based system that collects clean and harmonized data from every experiment, past and present, conducted anywhere in the world for Henkel 3D printing. Experts in Henkel Adhesive Technologies research teams are leveraging the Albert platform to create innovative solutions for customers.

Darragh Fitzpatrick, Lab Manager and Innovation Leader for 3D Printing in Dublin, Ireland, works with Albert every day. “I’ve been working in research and development teams at Henkel for almost 20 years – and Albert is something that’s really game changing,” Darragh says.
Together with Origin, Henkel has conducted extensive material testing for compatibility and mechanical resistance with the help of Albert.
Rapid solutions to support COVID-19 testing

Loctite 3D Printing’s recent partnership with Origin to create nasal swabs for Covid-19 testing is a great example of Albert’s ability to speed up collaborative innovation. The software selected the best possible material by instantly reviewing over 16,000 formulations in Henkel’s 3D portfolio. By finding the right material so quickly, Albert helped experts from Henkel and its partner Origin to rapidly design and produce millions of nasopharyngeal test swabs that are now a much-needed part of the global battle against Covid-19. This speed of 3D printing innovation could not be achieved by traditional methods of production.
With big data to collaborative innovation

Albert is making an impact at every stage of our product development process. For example, the platform supports our teams at the start of new projects through use of materials research and design of experiment acceleration. It also can give an instant estimation on the compositional cost of formulations. A great feature is the direct access to formulation and raw materials safety considerations.

Albert also contains live data about all available batches of raw materials to help the innovators plan activities and identify stock locations quickly. It offers laboratory management features that make sure all tasks are completed on time and in line with standard procedures. The tool provides detailed notes about how to prepare and conduct formulations and tests – to ensure consistent and reliable results.


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