3D Helmet Project
Project Details: 2 months • October - November 2020 • With AMPOS Orthopaedics Clinic
This pilot project took place during an internship with AMPOS Orthopaedics Clinic. This medical office provides orthopaedic and prosthetic services. They provide assistive devices for patients with both upper and lower-body medical complications. One of the many tasks of this clinic is to make helmets for patients who have had craniectomies; surgery where part of the skull is removed to relieve pressure from brain swelling.
The goal of this project was to streamline the manufacturing process of these helmets with 3D printing. This would make it faster, cleaner, and easily repeatable. There would also be less material waste because technicians would be able to create variations of helmets virtually as opposed to making multiple physical casts and moulds.
NAVIGATING NEW TECHNOLOGY
This project included learning about 3D scanning and navigating 3D CAD modeling in Fusion 360 for the first time, while also teaching the new technology to employees at AMPOS. All testing for scanning and helmet fittings were done with an AMPOS employee to maintain patient confidentiality while allowing project documentation. This research and testing phase involved collaborating with prosthetists and technicians, and a local 3D printing company. After a lot of trial and error, the 3D printing process was streamlined to prioritize time, cost, and efficiency.
The outcome of this pilot project was successful and also exceeded expectations by producing a viable alternative to traditional protective helmet fabrication. This method uses less materials, is cleaner, and some of is can be done remotely. A full instruction document was also made for the AMPOS staff, walking any technician or clinician through the full design process. Even though further work is needed, AMPOS plans to integrate this system into their regular workflow in the future.