All articles by Blatha

Blatha

The shape of things to come

Nitinol is a smart material with a shape-memory effect. This phenomenon is one of the most fascinating in material science and makes the metal attractive for medical applications. But as unique as the properties of nitinol are, the obstacles involved in processing the material are great. Medical Device Developments talks to Dr Bernd Vogel, the founder of nitinol producing company Endosmart, about the possibilities of overcoming these obstacles and moving the processing towards a level of automation.

Mechanical dawn

Automation and artificial intelligence are having a major global impact, not least in manufacturing. Use of this technology means better data insights, improved troubleshooting and faster procedures, resulting in a more efficient factory flow. Emma Green explores the current and future developments in artificial intelligence, including the use of robotics to enhance the manufacturing process.

Little wonders

A recent breakthrough in nanophotonics that is a potential game-changer for medical device development is nanotweezers. They allow particle manipulation at the nanoscale, which could lead to better diagnosis, monitoring and treatment. Yuebing Zheng, the assistant professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Texas, speaks to Medical Device Developments about how these nanotweezers work and the ways in which they could be used by the industry.

Behind the eye of the beholder

Last year, retinal implant company Bionic Vision Technologies raised $18 million to develop and commercialise its bionic eye, and it is using the new funds to begin a human clinical trial of its implant in patients with retinitis pigmentosa. Abi Millar talks to Julie Anne Quinn, the CEO of the company, to find out more about its retinal devices and its plans to bring them to global markets.

Pump it up

Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are having a major global impact, not least in manufacturing. Using this technology means better data insights, improved troubleshooting and faster procedures, resulting in a more efficient factory flow. Emma Green explores the current and future developments in AI, including the use of robotics to enhance the manufacturing process.

See the light

The fibre laser has the almost magical ability to write like an invisible pen, with a tiny stream of photonic ink, directly onto almost any product or material, without physical contact or the need for consumables. This has led to its widespread and rapid adoption across a broad spectrum of different industries worldwide. Dave Clark, the director of marketing at IPG Photonics, explains why the time could now be here for its introduction into the medical device manufacturing market.

Particle and parcel

Particle contamination can pose serious product quality issues and, in the event of a recall, critically damage the reputation of a manufacturer. What are the sources of contamination, and what strategies can be deployed to detect and control them? Erwin Freund, the executive director of product engineering at Amgen, talks to Sarah Lynch.

Power to the people

The developers behind a new wireless charging system claim it can power implants efficiently no matter where or how they are positioned in the body. Elly Earls meets Dr Arun Venkatasubramanian, the head of implanted connectivity at Cambridge Consultants, to discuss what this discovery could mean for medical device development.

Right down the line

With regulations evolving fast, the discussion around track and trace revolves around meeting compliance deadlines. Dr Jyrki Syväri of Boehringer Ingelheim, Robert Jan van der Horst of DSM Sinochem Pharmaceuticals, and Tania Snioch of GS1 explain how traceability projects can intersect with a manufacturer’s business goals and deliver value across the entire supply chain.

Combine forces

The question of which is best when considering whether to use a charge-coupled device or complementary metal oxide semiconductor sensors for imaging has long hung over the medical device community. With the ongoing development of technologies and markets, this is an evolving topic. Emma Green considers both proposals, as well as hybrid technologies, offering insight into how best to choose.