Week 3

This week was all about making the created scaffold patterns printable.


The patterns that we created previous week were flat 2D pictures. Cartilage scaffolds are obviously 3d structures.  Our first approach to make the created patterns 3D was by image tracing the created scaffold patterns into vectors, and extruding these curves with Rhino. This resulted in the  following 3D structure:


The problem with this method was that the lines were extruded but didn’t have a thickness and therefore were not printable. We tried to solve this problem by offsetting the surfaces, but we didn’t have enough computing power to perform this action. When we performed this action on the computers of the VUMC it resulted in a lot of error’s due to intersections and other problems. So it turned out not to be the method we were looking for.

After this we tried a lot of different methods using several software packages like:

  • Osirix
  • Vgstudio max
  • Invesalius
  • Mimicks


All this approaches and use of software did not result in satisfactory results. Then we took a new approach in which we used a combination of Illustrator, Photoshop and Rhinoceros. With this new approach we strongly simplified the pattern by manipulating the pattern in photshop by applying a lot of filters and offsetting the lines. This resulted in this new pattern:


By image tracing this simplified image and cutting the holes away from a solid box in Rhino we were able to produce a higly simplified printable model of one single layer of cartilage. We enlarged this file and send it to the 3D printer to see how it would turn out in real life.

Simpele filescaffold oor

Next to that we also created an image of the parametric ear that has been made during Advanced Prototyping in 2014 with the image of the pattern that we created wrapped around it. This may is not functional yet, but it geves a good impression of what our goal is in the project, which is a printable ear with a cartilage matrix applied to it.