Implantable micro-devices may one day help regenerate nerves in humans, but for now they are limited by several factors. One limitation is the processing methods used for making the micro-devices, which sometimes require etching patterns into the biodegradable materials. Shoachen Chen is helping medical equipment designers develop micro-devices by improving the processing of biodegradable materials. The Iowa State University professor of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering uses lasers for producing micro-features on polymer surfaces. He is carving out answers to questions about how lasers remove materials from polymers. His work, funded by the National Science Foundation, is important to understanding how designers integrate materials into biodegradable micro-devices. For more information, contact Chen at (515) 294-2298.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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