Each year ambitious young professionals apply to the competitive Prince Albert Fund for a chance of a lifetime: to get a year-long stipend that allows them to acquire experience in conducting international projects. The 17 young professionals that are chosen then approach a Belgian company where they would like to do a project of their choosing. We were very proud to hear that three of the seventeen young professionals this year alone chose Materialise.
After an amazing first week of brainstorming with the students, we were happy to begin to really work on the projects with the selected 8 students. It was an incredibly busy week as we went around to cities all over Benin to conduct research, but very exciting to work on the details of the projects and to work with the students on developing their project management skills. The progress of each project and personal development of each student have advanced in just these first two weeks and we’re looking forward to seeing how the next two weeks will go. But let’s first give you an update about the Benin Summer School’s second week…
7-year-old Joos fell on the playground at school leaving him with a double arm fracture. After his arm healed and the cast was removed, his arm was completely crooked and his arm was not functioning the way it should: suddenly he could not do some of his favorite things such as summersaults or handstands.
When I hear the word “anatomical lab” I can feel a chill run up and down my spine. I imagine a 19th-century-style dusty basement lined with formaldehyde-filled jars home to various organs; essentially a place where Frankenstein’s monster or a duck with a frog arm could pop out at any minute.
What’s the best part about being an intern at Materialise? Apart from learning all about 3D Printing, mastering the Mimics Innovation Suite and having some of the most amicable, engaged colleagues, I’d have to say that I’m happy doing work that improves and saves lives.
What do mummies and cheetahs have in common? Other than being typical Halloween costumes, both have been scanned and made into 3D-printed models at the Field Museum in Chicago using Materialise’s Mimics software.
In South Africa’s Kimberley Hospital Complex, doctors have successfully performed the country’s first 3D-printed jaw bone implantation. Two patients suffering from facial disfigurations because of a cancer received titanium jaw implants.
Could you imagine feeling pain in your hip every day for over 35 years? Seventy-one-year old Meryl Richards knows this feeling all too well: she has lived with pain in her left hip since it was damaged in a car accident in 1977. She had already undergone six surgeries, which left her hip in an extremely fragile state, and it had gotten to the point that her left leg pushed up through her feeble hip bone, leaving her leg two inches shorter than her right counterpart. She had used crutches and sticks to help her walk for years, and thought she would soon be bound to her wheelchair for the rest of her life.
In October 2008 at 27-years-old, I was just finishing my PhD in biomedical engineering at KU Leuven and was looking for my next step. I had focused much of my doctorate research on patient-specific planning for cranio-maxillofacial surgery and my colleague Frederik was also finishing up his doctorate degree with a focus on patient-specific implants for orthopedics.