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Stratasys Part of New CYBER Team for 3D Printed Orthotic Devices Targeting Veterans

Reported by: Irina Robu, PhD

Due to the aging population of the baby boomer generation, it is estimated that within the next four years, by 2020 around 7.3 million people in the US will use some kind of orthotic device.  While traditional orthotic devices continue to provide more mobility to their users, the intersection between orthotic manufacturing and 3D printing  proves to be a positive imporovement when it comes to creating custom design and better fitting devices.

Currently, Stratasys has become one of the most established 3D printing companies to consider the growing need for better quality orthotic devices. Hence, a partnership with Altair Engineering and University of Michigan Orthotics and Prosthetics Center has led to formation of the CYBER team will work together to transform the design, comfort, utility and customization of Ankle Foot Orthotics (AFO).

The CYBER team hopes to accomplish several goals such as reduce delivery time of AFO from 2-4 weeks to 1 day, enhance the level of orthotic’s accurate fit by eliminating use of plaster, enhance freedom and eliminate multiple visits for fitting. The goal is to connect “the digital thread in a cloud-based cyber physical system which will connect fused deposition modeling (FDM®) additive manufacturing technology and Altair® OptiStruct® software” to produce customized AFOs.

The  CYBER team is working with Ann Arbor, Michigan’s US Veterans’ Administration (VA) to address the orthotics needs of veterans.
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