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Implants & Prosthetics

Learn more about the materials and properties of today's advanced implants and prosthetics. Examples include cardiac pacemakers, defibrillators, and orthopedics.

News: Electronics & Computers
Harvesting Energy for Medical Implants

Scientists at the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland have demonstrated a new technique for harvesting energy from mechanical vibrations of the environment and converting it into electricity. They explain that energy harvesters are needed, for example, in wireless self-powered sensors and medical...

News: Medical
Developing an Artificial Retina to Restore Vision

Loss of eyesight is often caused by retinal degeneration as people age. But, an interdisciplinary team of researchers from Tel Aviv University, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Centers for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, both in Israel, and Newcastle University, OK, are developing a prosthetic...

News: Materials
Degradable Implants Mean Fewer Surgeries

A team of researchers at researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM in Bremen, Germany, have developed load bearing, biodegradable implants that are completely degradable in the body. As a first step, they have used powder injection molding to...

R&D: Medical

New research by mechanical engineers at Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, aims at fighting bacterial biofilms that can foul implantable medical devices. Bacteria secrete a slimy substance that forms...

News: Medical
3D Printed Facial Prostheses Offer Quick, Affordable Solution

Researchers from the University of Miami reported at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology that they have developed a fast and inexpensive way to make facial prostheses for eye cancer patients using facial scanning software and 3D printing. Their process can...

News: Medical
Transparent Sensors Offer Better View of Brain

A team of engineers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is developing see-through implantable medical sensor arrays, in order to help neural researchers study the brain. The technology, they say, has potential applications in neuroscience, cardiac care, and even contact lenses.

News: Medical
Dissolving Metal for Implantable Medical Devices

A team of scientists at the University of Pittsburgh, along with collaborators at the University of Cincinnati, and North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, are developing implantable medical devices made from biodegradable metals that can dissolve within a fixed time period,...

News: Medical
Feeling Sensations Across Prosthetic Limb

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, and the Louis Stokes Cleveland Veterans Affairs Medical Center have discovered that patterns of electric signals sent by a computer into nerves in a patient’s arm and to his brain, can give distinct sensations of touch to the patient’s...

Briefs: Medical

Human thumbs are amazing things, adding abilities for grasping that most other mammals don’t have. Now, mechanical engineers at MIT have developed a robot that enhances the grasping motion of the...

R&D: Medical

Researchers at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Livermore, CA, were awarded up to $2.5 million to develop an implantable neural device with the ability to record and...

News: Materials
Creating Custom Medical Implants with 3D Printers

A team of engineers at Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, has developed an innovative method of using off-the-shelf 3D printers and materials to fabricate custom medical implants that can contain antibacterial and chemotherapeutic compounds for targeted drug delivery.

News: Medical
Self-Fitting Implant Material for Facial Reconstruction

Defects in the head, face, or jaw, whether from disease, injury, or birth defect, can dramatically impact a person’s appearance. A team of researchers at Texas A&M University, College Station, report that they have developed a specialized material that can expand with warm salt water...

News: Medical
What’s the Buzz? Fly Sound Processing Could Help Humans

A team of engineers at The University of Texas at Austin has developed a tiny, low-power device that mimics a fly’s hearing mechanism, which could be used to build the next generation of hypersensitive hearing aids with intelligent microphones that could adaptively focus only on those...

R&D: Medical

A team of engineers at Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, say they have developed a technique that could produce “soft machines” made of elastic materials and liquid metals for potential...

News: Materials
Untangling the Secret of Barnacle Superglue

The strength of barnacle cement is unbeaten when compared to anything man-made, say researchers at Newcastle University, UK. It can stick to any surface, under any conditions. But exactly how it works has been a mystery. The international team of scientists have shown for the first time that barnacle...

R&D: Medical

A team of scientists at MIT has developed a new sensor that, they say, can enable long-term monitoring of oxygen levels in cancerous tumors, which may advance diagnosis and treatment.

R&D: Electronics & Computers

A team of scientists from the University of Texas, Dallas, along with colleagues at the University of Tokyo, Japan, have created biologically adaptive transistor devices that have the ability to...

R&D: Medical

The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) launched its Revolutionizing Prosthetics program to advance the field of modular upper-limb prosthetics and committed to making the...

News: Electronics & Computers
Treating PTSD with Removable Brain Implant

Scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) recently received $5.6 million from the Department of Defense's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop an implantable neural interface that can record and stimulate neurons within the brain to treat neuropsychiatric...

News: Regulations/Standards
FDA Issues Draft Guidance on Cybersecurity

Recognizing that the need for effective cybersecurity to ensure medical device functionality has become more important with the increasing use of wireless, Internet- and network-connected devices, and the frequent electronic exchange of medical device-related health information, the FDA has issued a...

News: Medical
Bionic Pancreas Provides Dramatic Results in Clinical Trials with Type 1 Diabetics

A team of researchers from Boston University and Massachusetts General Hospital report their study results in a paper published in the New England Journal of Medicine, that reveals that the latest version of a bionic pancreas device was successfully tested in type...

News: Medical
Improving Retinal Prostheses and Artificial Vision

Researchers at Stanford University say that they used electrical stimulation of retinal cells to produce the same patterns of activity that occur when the retina sees a moving object. They say that this is a step toward restoring natural, high-fidelity vision to blind people.

News: Materials
Nature-Inspired Model for Low-Friction Bearings

The natural mechanical properties of natural joints are considered unrivalled. Cartilage is coated with a special layer of lubrication that allows joints to move virtually friction-free, even under high pressure. Using simulations on supercomputers, scientists from Forschungszentrum Jülich in...

News: Robotics, Automation & Control
Introducing the Bionic Man

The NIH’s Bionic Man site helps viewers visually explore some of the latest bioengineering creations from research funded by the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering. From prosthetics to artificial kidneys, these technologies are changing lives now and in the future.

R&D: Electronics & Computers

An interdisciplinary research team from Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Arizona, Tucson, has developed a flexible medical implant...

News: Medical
Implantable Cuff to Lower Blood Pressure

A team of microsystems engineers and neurosurgeons at the University of Freiburg in Germany are working to develop a new implantable cuff equipped with electrodes that, they say, can lower blood pressure without causing side effects. While doctors usually prescribe drugs against high blood pressure, in...

News: Medical

A clinical study at Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, found that patients with implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) have significantly lower risk of death and...

News: Medical

Three biomedical engineering seniors in the School of Engineering & Applied Science at Washington University in St. Louis, MO used a 3D printer to design and create a robotic prosthetic arm out...

R&D: Medical

Professor Gil Weinberg, founding director of the Georgia Tech Center for Music Technology, has created a robotic drumming prosthesisthat can be attached to amputees’s arms and powers...

Ask the Expert

Ralph Bright on the Power of Power Cords

Understanding power system components and how to connect them correctly is critical to meeting regulatory requirements and designing successful electrical products for worldwide markets. Interpower’s Ralph Bright defines these requirements and explains how to know which cord to select for your application.

Inside Story

Rapid Precision Prototyping Program Speeds Medtech Product Development

Rapid prototyping technologies play an important role in supporting new product development (NPD) by companies that are working to bring novel and innovative products to market. But in advanced industries where products often make use of multiple technologies, and where meeting a part’s exacting tolerances is essential, speed without precision is rarely enough. In such advanced manufacturing—including the medical device and surgical robotics industries — the ability to produce high-precision prototypes early in the development cycle can be critical for meeting design expectations and bringing finished products to market efficiently.

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