The Institute for Medical Engineering and Medical Informatics (IM2) has a long tradition and expertise in Additive Manufacturing (AM). IM2 is a driving force for applied research in AM for MedTech industries and clinics. The institute is well connected throughout Europe and was involved in several European and national funded projects. IM2 runs several Selective Laser Melting machines for metals. Beside testing different metallic materials i.a. NiTi or Magnesium, IM2 is running a qualified AM process for the production of titanium implants. In terms of ceramics IM2 is doing research with bone replacing materials like Hydroxyapatite and Tricalcium-Phosphate. Further on IM2 operates different polymer machines, either for UV curable acrylic multi-materials or as extrusion plotters for ABS, PLA, PCLA or laser sintering machines for PA. Beside this unique AM and process quality expertise, IM2 has established complementary knowhow towards Industry 4.0. We are developing novel AM processes and software solutions to shift and distribute design and manufacturing skills to end-users. This allows different industries to develop new business models and new service designs along with AM and digital manufacturing.
The School of Life Sciences FHNW is supporting the interdisciplinary common research on AM related topics. Beside IM2's excellent expertise for AM and its side processes, as described in the paragraph above, we could combine further Life Sciences expertise for AM related topics. Together with the Institute for Chemistry and Bioanalytics (ICB) and their in-depth knowledge in cell-breeding and bacteria-test labs, we could bring AM structures into pre-clinical biological condition and check their impact on biology. This widens the portfolio of AM research applications dramatically and ends-up in cell and bacteria processing knowledge which is used to run our latest AM and biomedical research field - 3D Bio-Plotters.