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Custom 3D-printed prosthetics for the developing world

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Forge helped LimbForge scale and bring the power of additive manufacturing to more people suffering from limb loss.

LimbForge™ is a nonprofit that provides tools and training that help clinicians deliver high-quality and cost-effective 3D-printed prosthetics. Turning to Forge helped LimbForge add a greater degree of customization, speed, and scale to the process.

Industry

Design
Engineering
Manufacturing
Medical

Challenge

Poverty is a cause and consequence of disability. As many as 100 million people worldwide live with limb loss. Assistive technology helps people with disabilities become contributors to and beneficiaries of development. Yet, globally some estimate that 95% of people living on fewer than $2 per day have no access to prosthetics. Clinicians struggle to help, but the traditional manufacturing process is slow and requires many parts and specialized equipment. Additive manufacturing can streamline the process, but clinicians need an easy way to design for 3D printers.

How LimbForge solved it with Forge.

LimbForge brought the ease of additive manufacturing and connected software workflows to custom prosthetics. Clinicians use LimbForge software to select limb parameters through the cloud. Fusion 360™ software drives design creation behind an intuitive interface. But the LimbForge development team found that it took too long to add new customization options and for the software to render designs. Adding the Forge platform to the workflow reduced the steps required to add options. Forge also simplified the rendering process, which helps clinicians modify designs faster and with less risk of error.

Forge highlights include the following:

  • Making rendering a real-time process, instead of it taking hours
  • Cutting the time required to add prosthetic parameter options from days to hours
  • Managing large data sets and applying them to software workflows in a fraction of the time it took previously

“We needed a way to step up our high-frequency data-management capabilities and software workflow efficiency without adding developers. Forge was the key. It’s helping us develop more additive manufacturing options more quickly.”

Kaitlyn Hova
Lead Developer
LimbForge

“Limb loss is a little-talked-about cause of suffering and social isolation in the developing world. Matching people with suitable prosthesis transforms lives. Forge helps us connect people to the 3D-printed prosthetics in a way that’s truly scalable.”

Andreas Bastian
Board Chair
LimbForge