New $18m 3D-printing centre focusing on healthcare applications launched

Pictured is a surgical guide for oral maxillofacial surgery. UV light is used to cure photo sensitive resins into a 3D structure. This is used for highly detailed precision instruments such as dental appliances. PHOTO: NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE
A metal component of a knee implant. 3D printers use a high powered laser to fuse powered material together. These printers can be used to create metal or polymer parts of high complexity that may be different or costly to manufacture using other means. PHOTO: NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE - Tissue regeneration, implants and drug formulations enabled by 3D printing - these are just some of the areas that a new $18 million 3D-printing centre launched on Friday (July 21) will explore.

The National University of Singapore Centre for Additive Manufacturing (AM.NUS), whose laboratories are based in the NUS campus in Kent Ridge, will develop and apply 3D-printing technology in the biomedical and healthcare fields.

The new centre will also leverage NUS' multi-disciplinary expertise from the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Science, Faculty of Dentistry and School of Design and Environment, as well as conduct courses for postgraduate students.

"The NUS Centre for Additive Manufacturing will play a critical role in supporting Singapore's vision of becoming a leading AM hub. Through this inter-faculty pooling of expertise, we hope to boost technology capabilities as well as advance intellectual property development and commercialisation of AM-enabled biomedical technologies," said Professor Jerry Fuh Ying-Hsi, the centre's co-director, who is from the department of mechanical engineering at NUS' Faculty of Engineering.

Parliamentary Secretary for Health Amrin Amin launched the centre at the Namic Healthcare Summit, held at Hotel Fort Canning on Friday (July 21).

"AM.NUS' specific focus on healthcare applications further aims to bring the latest in innovative technology to clinicians, with the aim of improving patient outcomes," he said. "Importantly, the collaboration will bring together industry, clinicians, hospitals, engineers and designers to tackle complex healthcare issues."

The initial funding of $18 million came from NUS, the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster and the Singapore Economic Development Board.

Four industry partners - Creatz3D, Dou Yee Enterprises, Forefront Additive Manufacturing and Osteopore International - also signed collaboration memorandums of understanding with the centre.

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