Für den Inhalt der Angaben zeichnet die Projektleitung verantwortlich.
This project, funded by Gebert Rüf Stiftung, is supported by the following project partners: HEIG-VD; Ortho-Team AG; Ortho-Reha Wallner SA; Botta Orthopädie AG
Project no: GRS-076/18
Amount of funding: CHF 150'000
Duration: 04.2019 - 09.2020
Area of activity:
InnoBooster, seit 2018
iAi institute - Swiss Motion Technologies
Avenue de Longemalle 20
1020 Renens (Schweiz)
Mobility is a basic human right. To such an extent that any accident, injury, or illness restricting our capacity to move, renders us “dis-abled”.
Today, there are an estimated 10 million people worldwide living with the loss of a leg, for whom the cornerstone of mobility is their prosthesis. Sadly, even in developed countries, it is not uncommon for prosthetic users to be provided with a sub-optimally fitted prosthetic leg that causes great pain and widely impairs their mobility. Indeed, an intimate (ideal? perfect?) fit is of the uttermost importance in order to avoid pressure points and friction, which are known to cause inflammations and ulcers.
One of the main components of the prosthesis is the liner, a silicone sock worn between the leg and the hard socket shell in which patients insert their residual limb. Liners damp the shocks of walking and distribute the pressure on the surface of the limb. Through these functions, liners play a crucial role in the overall comfort and mobility that patients.
Our unprecedented manufacturing process allows for the creation tailored liners based on a 3D scan of the shape of the limb. Thanks to our patent-pending silicone 3D printing technology, we open the door to a new era of easily accessible and affordable perfect-fit tailored liners.
Our first market exploration and pilot tests have shown tremendous hopes and expectations around the groundbreaking possibilities that this technology enables. The present project will help us bring our solution to market, and enhance our service based on customer feedback. On top of that, a clinical study will be performed in order to provide scientific evidence vouching for the superior performance of our products. This will give us crucial insights to talk with our customers and position our products.
Our long term vision is to drive a paradigm shift from mass production to mass customisation in the orthopaedic industry, in order to enable everyone to enjoy the most comfortable devices possible at an affordable price. This truly represents bringing tomorrow’s mobility solutions... today!
What is special about the project?
Our project brings innovation on several fronts: technology, business model and clinical.
On the technological front, today, there is no method able to 3D print orthopaedic-grade silicone. Our 3D printing technology is therefore a first of its kind. Furthermore, if this technology is particularly adapted for the production of prosthetic liners, there are multiple applications (such as orthopaedic insoles, pressure therapy garments, orthoses and many more) that could be envisioned. This technological innovation therefore holds the potential to disrupt several fields within the orthopaedic industry.
Our vision, to democratise tailored liners, takes a bold and ambitious approach compared to the business model of our competitors. Indeed, our competitors try to provide a plurality of off-the-shelf models to match as much as possible the various shapes of the patients' residual limbs. We will implement on-demand manufacturing, which means that we will have no inventory and use a "smart factory” organisation. The internal organisation we envision will therefore be poles apart from the internal organisation of our competitors. This also brings along a new competitive positioning where we innovate by creating a brand revolving on the tailor-made, the personal comfort and the data digitalisation. We take the mass- customisation approach, as opposed to the mass production model of our competitors. The financial viability of our model has been thoroughly studied and validated, and support documentation can be made available upon request.
Finally, our method is the first digital method for tailored liner manufacturing. There is extensive scientific evidence suggesting that customising a liner to its bearer would greatly increase his comfort. However, due to today's absence of digital-based method for tailored liner manufacturing, no model regarding the compression and cushioning parameters to apply actually exists. This means that through our clinical study, we would lay the first bases of such a contention model. This has huge implications, as anyone who would digitally design custom liners would then use our contention model. Our innovation here affects the prosthetic community in general by providing new tools for liner creation of unprecedented performance.
The project began in April 2019. So far, an advanced Post-Market Clinical Follow-up system has been implemented. This system will allow to monitor at large scale the prosthetic performance of our devices in the field, thereby gathering evidence related to the benefits of our products. This system is fundamental for the long term growth of our solution in society.
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Persons involved in the project
Last update to this project presentation 15.10.2020