Nypro Healthcare Improves Rapid 3D Prototyping for Medical Device Makers

Elizabeth Montalbano

March 24, 2014

4 Min Read
Nypro Healthcare Improves Rapid 3D Prototyping for Medical Device Makers

Nypro Healthcare is offering two new services for medical device makers to ensure they create quality and accurate 3D prototypes before going into volume manufacturing.

Nypro, a Jabil company that provides healthcare design and manufacturing services, now offers customers a 3D ProScan service leveraging the company's CT scanner that allows them to inspect plastic-based medical devices for quality and accuracy before they go into mass production.

They service them to conduct first article inspections, compare their products with CAD drawings, or compare parts of a device made by two different facilities or tools, Visent Avxhi, business development manager of 3D ProScan, a division of NyproMold and a business unit of Nypro Healthcare, told Design News.

"In one hour you get a representation of your parts -- full internal and external features no matter what the geometry it is or no matter how many dimensions it has," he told us, adding that this can be done by leaving the prototype intact without disassembling its parts.

The company has also invested $2 million in a new 32,000-square-foot product-introduction facility near Dallas, Texas, where medical device makers can build a prototype quickly and with more accuracy and control over the resulting product, said Brian Highly, vice president and general manager of device and consumer health at Nypro Healthcare. "We enable our customers to design and develop their product and get it into commercial market more quickly and efficiently by leveraging our service offering," he told us.

Nypro offers 3D ProScan for a fee based on what type of service a customer wants, such as by the hour for programming dimensions using the scanner, or per part for other device services, Avxhi told us. He explained to Design News how a company making plastic-based medical materials might use the service. If a company was designing a new cap, for instance, the prototype would come to Nypro for quality inspection to ensure all the dimensions are accurate and that it properly functions.

"We put it in an scanner and come up with the results -- a 3D-point cloud that represents the part accurately," Avxhi said. "You can see it in 3D and virtually cross-section it, and do all kinds of things the customer requires to make sure the part is accurate and the way it is supposed to be."

The design and development center located in Coppell, Texas, also helps medical device makers stabilize prototypes to prepare them for mass production. The facility features an advanced technology model shop; a fully digitized machine shop; environmentally controlled chambers; and a 1,500-square-foot Class 10,000 clean room. It also has a Stratasys Objet260 Connex Multi-Material 3D Printer for rapid prototyping, Highly said.

Over the next 12 months Nypro will hire 25 professionals to man the facility to help device makers take their designs from concept to finish, providing input not only in the design process but also in the development of a finished product. It plans to add another 20 employees over the next three years.

Generally, when a device maker is developing a product, once the design process is complete, the company hands over the development to the manufacturer, which gives the device maker less control over the product, Highly said.

By leveraging Nypro's facility and services, however, device makers can maintain more control over the product from design to prototype, ensuring it's ready to be mass produced according to the design the company had in mind. "I think anyone will tell you that the most ideal development relationship or partnership between a contract manufacture and OEM customer is one that engages early in concept phase," Highly said. "This allows us to have more input and control over manufacturing, suppliers, and [other aspects of the product lifecycle]."

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About the Author(s)

Elizabeth Montalbano

Elizabeth Montalbano has been a professional journalist covering the telecommunications, technology and business sectors since 1998. Prior to her work at Design News, she has previously written news, features and opinion articles for Phone+, CRN (now ChannelWeb), the IDG News Service, Informationweek and CNNMoney, among other publications. Born and raised in Philadelphia, she also has lived and worked in Phoenix, Arizona; San Francisco and New York City. She currently resides in Lagos, Portugal. Montalbano has a bachelor's degree in English/Communications from De Sales University and a master's degree from Arizona State University in creative writing.

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