As one of the main applications of our Investment Casting Technology and MIM Metal Injection Technology, the Medical Industry is one of the leading sectors in consume, due to the high-quality requirements as well as the materials used, which perfectly fits our production range.
Parts in Steel, Stainless Steel and Aluminium are highly demanded in this industry. We cover the necessity for parts up to 18 Kg with our Investment Casting production and auxiliary facilities, such as a full equipped Machining Workshop called Mecansa, which is part of Ecrimesa Group. For most complex parts in the lower range of weight, we cover the necessities of the sector with the adaptable MIM (Metal Injection Moulding) Technology, where we produce parts in steel and stainless Steel.
MIM enables us to achieve most of the complex shapes defined for the parts in medical devices such as endoscopy ones, where the sizes of the parts are usually below 150 gr. By reducing the machining needed in the parts, we can obtain external threads and inner complex shapes, which could not be easily machined and within the tolerances according to EPMA. Even improved by our company for single dimensions in the parts, for years the medical sector has been benefited from this versatile technology.
MIM parts are also used for biopsy devices like biopsy forceps, which are frequently manufactured in stainless steel using MIM technology, due to the complex form and durability required for this equipment, as well as a good surface finishing being the part directly in contact with patients.
In our aim of fulfilling the medical markets needs, we have a wide scope of MIM materials. Even a specific MIM alloy has developed MIM CrCo for the fabrication of prothesis. This has been achieved thanks to our collaboration with the CDTI (Centro de Desarrollo Tecnológico Industrial) based in Madrid.
Do not lose the opportunity to check out all the technical information on materials and tolerances with which we work with under https://ecrimesagroup.com/downloads/. Being one of the main highlights in our production method and one of the most relevant aspects within the medical industry, we count with the highest qualitative control equipments and workforces. Every company in the group has their own Quality Department, fully equipped with the latest means such as GOM Scan and Quick Vision, adequate to the parts size produced.
Regarding the internal health of our parts, we have a fully equipped laboratory with a highly skilled team, where the quality of the material is controlled from the very beginning of the process.
The Investment Casting process is controlled since the melting in terms of composition, alloy, temperature, and every available parameter, to fulfill the requirements of our customers. Thanks to our own melting facilities, we are able to achieve the desired alloy compositions defined by our customers and in accordance with the high standards that govern the medical sector.
For parts with lower consumes and more weight, the Investment Casting Technology is the perfect option due to its versatility combined with our machining means in case of complex parts, as surgical equipment usually is.
Investment Casting is commonly used in the orthopaedics industry, as the part obtained has incredible details compared to previously used technologies such as forging. Even nowadays the forging and machining, or both in combination, are used in the orthopaedic industry, but the cost saving provided by Investment Casting processes made them uncompetitive for reasonable consumes. The part shown in the picture is one of the components of an orthopaedics knee for prostheses where stainless steel is the most demanded material thanks to its desirable structural properties, biocompatibility and its good performance in load bearing and fixation. Due to the increase in steel price in the latest moths, Investment Casting is taking advantage in this market even for lower consumes as the waste reduction of raw material is considerable for this kind of parts.
Investment Casting parts are not only used for orthopaedics, but also in higher volume for medical equipment devices used for direct contact with patients such as endoscopy, surgical forceps, scalpers as well as for subsidiary equipment and devices such as operating tables, stretchers, pump components, connectors. For a better understanding of the technologies produced by Ecrimesa Group regarding its market applications, we could summarize by using MIM Technology for the most complex parts in the lower range of weight and with high consumes, as you can see in the graphic.
To cover all the needs of the market we also have rapid prototyping for both technologies. This enables our customers to have parts for the final development, assembly trials and ergonomic improvement. We consider it to be a very important aspect within the market acceptance of a product, as it improves the experience of both the patient and the operator. In the case of MIM parts, we can produce prototypes with Additive Manufacturing. This enables the customer to have parts without the need of manufacturing a mould i design stage or development. Dimensionally, the parts are useful for the improvement of the shape and checking the assembly. Nevertheless, regarding the mechanical properties the prototypes are not comparable to the MIM parts, which will be of a much higher level.
On the other hand, prototypes for Investment Casting technology are much more accurate to the casting process, even though the wax part is obtained in small serial by wax printing, the rest of the Investment Casting process can be produced as the serial production will be produced including material alloys, heat treatments, surface finishing and coatings. Also, dimension wise the parts in the field of Investment Casting tolerances and accuracy are within the limits that the wax printing enables, as it is our case.
As a partner of several companies in the medical sector, we are certified according to the norms EN9100:2018, IATF16949:2016, ISO14001:2015, CQI-9 and AD2000 Merkblatt WO for the fabrication of steel parts by MIM and investment casting.
As a complement to this informations, we recommend you to visit our blog What is the best technology for manufacturing metal parts?