April 20, 2017
April 20, 2017
April 22, 2017
Pacific Southwest Section
One of the most distinguishing factors that the human has different than other species is the way of displacement. Because of human's gait, structure and position, the knee is one of the biggest and more essential joints in the human body, with a particular way of working, difficult to be analyzed by medical students. The loss of mobility in the human knee joint can happen because of injuries, deformities or illnesses due to swelling or advanced age. When this occurs, a replacement by prosthesis can be performed in order to improve the quality of life of the subject. Developing solid models of the knee is one of many steps involved in using engineering principles to solve medical problems within the human knee joint. Injuries to the knee joint are amongst the most common in sports activities and understanding the anatomy of the joint is fundamental to develop prosthesis better, more adapted to the natural human gait.
This paper presents the design of a right knee joint prototype, from a 3D scanner, and then obtaining an output STL. file for the 3D printer. Two different types of plastic (ABS and PLA) and two models of 3D printer (MakerBot Replicator2X and Creator Pro) were used in achieving the goal of reproducing as accurate as possible and cheaper than the original knee prototype made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic by a German factory specialized in making scientific prototypes. Visual quality, production time, and weight of the printed parts were compared with reference to the machinery, material types, quantity, and printing parameters. Through this hands-on project, the students were trained in emerging manufacturing technologies such as 3D scanning, 3D printing and rapid prototyping, and additive manufacturing. Some of the difficulties encountered and the learning experience from the student team are also presented and discussed.
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