Frantsevich Institute for Problems of Materials Science, National Academy of Sciences
Anton du Plessis
Object Research Systems
South Africa / Montreal
Hydroxyapatite (synthetic and biogenic) and based materials are widely used for treating bone fractures in orthopedics, traumatology, and dentistry due to their exceptional in properties and similarity in chemical composition to the mineral component of natural bone. Biogenic hydroxyapatite has higher bioactivity than synthetic hydroxyapatite due to its native chemical composition and porosity. Moreover, it can be efficiently and cost-effectively produced from natural sources. Biogenic hydroxyapatite from cattle bones and glass ceramics based on it created in Frantsevich Institute for Problems of Materials Science of NAS of Ukraine have been successfully used in practice by leading Ukrainian surgeons in the form of powder, granules, blocks, porous and dense ceramics, and bioadditives in orthopedics, traumatology, purulent-bone surgery, dentistry, for bone tissue in plastic surgery, and treatment of osteoporosis.
Currently, the structure and properties of biogenic hydroxyapatite and glass ceramics have been modified by microwave sintering, foam replication method, and different additives like silicon, copper, iron, magnetite, etc. That allows for changing mechanical properties and resorption rate. However, using traditional methods of producing bioceramic implants requires additional technological operations to obtain specimens of the required shape and size. Additive manufacturing technology will allow the production of customized implants for each patient. Biogenic hydroxyapatite and glass ceramics based on it can be promising and low-cost materials for medical applications of 3D printing.
Dr. Olena Sych is Head of Department of Functional Materials for Medical Application at Frantsevich Institute for Problems of Materials Science (IPMS) of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine and researcher at Laboratory of Nanostructures of Institute of High Pressure Physics of the Polish Academy of Sciences. She is PhD in Materials Science. She teaches lectures for post-graduate students in IPMS about bioceramics and biomaterials. Her research work connected with creation and investigation of materials for bone tissue engineering based on hydroxyapatite. She is the leader of 15 grants and projects as well as the author of 140 scientific publications, including 3 patents. She believes that scientific work is impossible without interdisciplinary cooperation.
X-ray computed tomography is a popular non-destructive evaluation method for additive manufacturing, to provide confidence in part quality and to quantify the defects in critical parts, for example to ensure they are smaller than some size limit or less than some maximum volume fraction, or below the detection limit in critical areas. The method is key to process optimization, quality control and is undisputed as one of the best tools for evaluating AM parts.
In recent times, deep learning methods have become popular in various fields, and in the context of CT for additive manufacturing, there are some advancements that are highly valuable for this application. In this talk, two methods are discussed in some detail. The first is image enhancement using deep learning. This can be achieved by different methods, one of which is called “super-resolution”. In this approach, a poor resolution and high resolution scan of the same object is used to train a model to improve the quality of poor resolution scans of similar parts. This allows enhanced contrast on poor resolution scans, which allows the user to save time in scanning or scan at larger voxel size while getting more reliable results similar to a high resolution or longer scan time. This will be demonstrated using a lattice structure sample, which is often used in AM medical implants, but often cannot be scanned at high resolution due to size limitations on the object size vs the lattice feature size.
A second method involves teaching a deep learning model to segment AM porosity. The challenge with AM pores are that they are small and often near the voxel size of the scan, making their contrast insufficient for a good manual segmentation. There is also often a challenge with image artifacts due to material density or scan quality issues. These issues make the quantification of porosity challenging, especially when high throughput is required. Deep learning segmentation models can be developed to perform this task despite poor contrast and despite image artifacts, providing superior results in comparison to traditional “thresholding” methods. Results will be demonstrated on using such a model “out of the box” as a pre-trained model, as well as using this model as a starting point for adding training to make a stronger model.
Overall these techniques can assist in improving the use of CT for AM in terms of reliability and ease of use, and has great potential for automation of the image analysis workflows involved in using CT (since deep learning models, once trained, do not require any human input).
Professor Anton du Plessis is Associate Professor at Stellenbosch University (South Africa) and Head of sales: EMEA at Object Research Systems (Canada, remote). His research spans X-ray tomography applications, engineering materials, additive manufacturing and materials processing. He has published over 150 journal papers in these topics and is on the editorial board of a number of journals in these areas of interest. He acted as editor on a book "Fundamentals of Laser Powder Bed Fusion of Metals" and is deputy editor of Additive Manufacturing Letters and editor-in-chief of Tomography of Materials and Structures. He holds extraordinary professor positions at Nelson Mandela University and Central University of Technology (South Africa). He enjoys research collaboration and taking scientific imaging to the next level.