Feb 6, 2018 | By Benedict

Additive manufacturing giant Stratasys and 3D software specialist Dassault Systèmes have teamed up with Unlimited Tomorrow, a 3D printed prosthetics startup that uses 3D scanning and flexible materials to make low-cost robotic arms for amputees.

A lot can change in three years. Back in January 2015, we reported on the fledgling 3D printing career of teenage technology whizz-kid Easton LaChappelle, who was then attempting to raise money for his 3D printed prosthetics startup via GoFundMe.

Today, that startup is attracting funds from rather bigger entities. LaChappelle’s Unlimited Tomorrow company, which uses 3D scanning and 3D printing technologies to create low-cost robotic arms for amputees, has just partnered with two giants of the additive manufacturing world: Stratasys and Dassault Systèmes.

The partnership means Stratasys—known for its industrial additive manufacturing equipment and ownership of companies like MakerBot, GrabCAD, and Solidscape—will become the dedicated 3D printing provider for Unlimited Tomorrow, with Dassault Systèmes becoming the dedicated software provider.

Unlimited Tomorrow’s prosthesis fabrication process goes something like this: 3D scanners are used to scan both the missing or partially missing arm, as well as the opposite full arm, if there is one. Proprietary software is then used to turn this scan data into a 3D printable file. When this file is ready, it is 3D printed before being combined with sensors and wireless charging equipment, resulting in a functional robotic arm.

Stratasys is taking part in the Unlimited Tomorrow project as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility Program, and will provide the first 100 3D printed arms free of charge. It will then help scale up the 3D printed prosthetics venture by overseeing the Design for Additive Manufacturing (DFAM) process.

The baseline cost for an Unlimited Tomorrow prosthetic arm will be in the $5,000 region, with upgrades available for $2,500. (These can be useful for when children outgrow their original prosthesis.)

“Unlimited Tomorrow is driven by enabling the possible, with unique thinking that results in absolutely incredible ideas,” LaChappelle said yesterday. “Our intent is always ‘user-first,’ meaning the technology serves needs of patients from the outset, and it’s all driven by the most advanced technology.

“We are honored to have Stratasys and Dassault Systèmes join our growing enterprise coalition, further empowering us to change the paradigm for personalized, 3D printed prosthetics and accelerate our go-to-market.”

Dassault Systèmes has been on our radar this week after announcing a high-profile partnership with printing giant HP, which yesterday released its new full color Jet Fusion 300 & 500 series of 3D printers.



Posted in 3D Printer Company



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