Apr 4, 2018 | By David

An exciting new collaborative project has been announced between three major research institutes in Asia, with the integration and development of 3D printing and medical technology as its goal. Taiwan’s National Applied Research Labs (NAR Labs) and China Medical University Hospital (CMUH) have come together to establish a strategic partnership with the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC) in Singapore.

Back in 2013, Singapore agreed to invest S$500 million (US$380 million) in 3D printing under a Future of Manufacturing scheme. The NAMIC is a national programme initiative, led by NTUitive, the Innovation and Enterprise Company of Nanyang Technological University (NTU). Its focus is the upstream translation of advanced 3D printing research in universities and Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs), into downstream commercial applications. The scheme is also intended to lower barriers for companies to incorporate additive manufacturing technologies into their core businesses. It has support from the National Research Foundation (NRF) as well as the Prime Minister’s office, in partnership with SPRING Singapore and the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB).

The NAMIC falls in line with the Taiwanese government’s ''Southbound Policy'', which is aimed at enhancing cooperation and exchanges between Taiwan and 18 countries in Southeast Asia, South Asia and Australasia. The NAMIC comprises a number of 3D printing research centers, drawing together a large national pool of expertise on additive manufacturing in order to boost industrial applications as much as possible. Included in NAMIC’s talent pool are the National University of Singapore Centre for Additive Manufacturing (AM.NUS), Nanyang Technological University Singapore Centre for 3D Printing (SC3DP), and the Digital Manufacturing and Design Centre (DManD) of the Singapore University of Technology and Design.

In order to further strengthen Taiwan’s competitive advantage in the medical market, NARLabs, Tongtai Machine & Tool, China Steel, and TTMC launched a 3D printing laboratory at Hsinchu Biomedical Park, back in 2016. The aim of the facility is to develop medical material and manufacturing equipment domestically, and the collaboration between the organizations will also help to promote Taiwanese biotech and medical equipment on the global market. The aim is for Hsinchu Biomedical Park to become an internationally-renowned medical facility, that will serve local residents as well as forming part of international functions and research projects.

As for the CMUH, this state-of-the-art medical facility is the first hospital in Taiwan to fully integrate Chinese and Western medical practices, and it has a number of other unique features that demonstrate its commitment to innovation. A 3D printing medical research and development center was set up at the hospital in collaboration with Asia University, Taiwan, and the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) over three years ago. The centre regularly carries out advanced research and development regarding new medical technologies related to 3D printing, and it also develops its own customized biomedical devices.

One of the key areas that this new collaboration is hoping to push forward is multi-layer 3D printing. This will see Taiwan’s biomedical research expertise expand even further, in a way that will be beneficial for Singaporean partners and many other international players.



Posted in 3D Printing Technology



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