Explore North America’s Largest Annual Medtech Event

What are you doing February 6-8, 2018? How about coming by to visit with people from Creation Technologies manufacturing and design teams at Booth 546 at Medical Design & Manufacturing (MD&M) West ?

It’s going to be quite an event this year, and we’re really looking forward to reconnecting with industry friends as well as meeting new people. MD&M West is always a great place to solve existing challenges and be inspired by everything new in the MedTech industry.

At MD&M West you’ll find the largest showcase of MedTech suppliers in the country, plus a full spectrum of solutions across the advanced design and manufacturing supply chain. Whether you’re interested in product design, new materials, intelligent sensors, testing solutions, components, packaging, or anything else needed to bring your concept to market, you can source from more than 2,000 cutting-edge suppliers in a time-saving format. Free presentations, interactive events, and fun activities throughout the expo make this a can’t-miss event.

Featuring its biggest program yet, the MD&M West conference will deliver four tracks of expert-led MedTech education you won’t find anywhere else — plus additional smart manufacturing and 3D printing programs — all with unlimited track hopping.   This year MD&M offers a full day of conferences focused on Medical Device Security.  This rigorous conference program will address security and privacy challenges for connected healthcare devices.

This is your chance to get up to speed with the strategies and techniques that turn concepts into competitive products. Curated with the help of an expert advisory team, this unmatched program is made by the industry for the industry and packed with information crucial to every stage in the development process.

Learn about Creation Technologies’ flexible model, integrated solutions and dedicated Customer-Focused Teams and how we offer a complete customized solution that delivers what our customers need…their way. Creation’s experience and robust systems help OEMs avoid costly surprises, get to market faster and scalability to achieve your business goals.

We would love to meet you and learn more about how we can help you meet your future goals. Drop by Booth #546 and learn how we do it.

You can use our Promo Code:  Special when registering and receive a free Expo Pass or 20% off Conference Pricing

Hope to see you there!

 

Tips for Engineers to Avoid Hidden Development Costs and Delays

I have yet to meet an engineer who enjoys seeing costs pile up during the design and development process.

And unexpected costs are definitely unwelcome visitors in the drive for product commercialization.

If you’d like some new, actionable ideas for getting a new product to market quickly and without those unexpected, expensive guests, here’s a suggestion for you…

Attend ‘How to Avoid Hidden Costs and Delays in the Product Design-to-Commercialization Cycle’ next week at PCB West in Santa Clara.

How to Avoid Hidden Costs and Delays in the Product Design-to-Commercialization Cycle: Creation Technologies Technical Workshop at PCB West

In this two-hour, technical workshop, Todd Dierking, Creation’s Director of Design Services and Todd Baggett, Creation’s EVP of Integrated Services, will share their engineering and component expertise to help you:

  • Get the right tradeoffs between Time and Money
  • Assess and define requirements to meet design controls, minimize costs, and still bring your creativity to the project
  • Simplify the prototyping process with some cost-effective technical techniques, as well as a checklist for commercial considerations that will help you make the best choice for each stage of prototyping
  • Uncover the ‘hidden costs’ of designing in the wrong materials

While you’re there, drop by Booth #216 and meet a team from Creation–San Jose, our rapid prototyping/manufacturing facility that’s about 10 minutes from the Santa Clara Convention Center.

Hope we’ll see you there!

More information here in our recent press release.

Creativity and Innovation in Medical Product Development

If you read my blog post back in July, you know that Creation Technologies and Creation Design Services were this year’s Innovation Station Sponsors at LSA2014, LifeScience Alley’s Health Technology Leadership Conference at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

It was amazing to meet life sciences innovators from across the globe as everyone joined LSA in celebrating 30 years of achievement in Minnesota’s medical community.

Personally, I was very impressed by Mayo Clinic Ventures. The organization systematically invests in new technology and start-ups to bring solutions to niche markets. This mindset will continue to be especially important as the medical industry focuses on the patient experience, and “outliers” become a thing of the past.

Check out the LSA2014 Conference Recap to see some of the insights shared by The Mayo Clinic, Medtronic, SharedClarity and many others.

The Power of Creativity in Innovation

In a rapidly changing industry like Healthcare, innovation is a must.

“To stimulate creativity, one must develop the childlike inclination for play.”
~Albert Einstein

We need to regain the creativity of our childhood to come up with revolutionary ideas, and we wanted Creation’s Innovation Station to help people tap into their hidden potential.

We also wanted everyone to have a lot of fun.

Naturally, we thought of LEGO!

Simulating the product commercialization process, we had a lot of fun helping guests design, build and program their own remote-controlled robots using LEGO Mindstorms.

We built some robots of our own, too, and definitely enjoyed chasing people around with them!

(Unfortunately Katie did less chasing than the rest of us…)

Nate Bullerman and Katie Eggert as Katie shows off her stylish footwear at LSA2014
Nate Bullerman and Katie Eggert as Katie shows off her stylish footwear at LSA2014

Here’s a quick recap of our own LSA experience:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1AKpDo48yc&w=560&h=315]

Innovation and Product Development

I recently came across an article with a photo of an awesome and authentic note to parents included in LEGO Instructions from 1974. As of this blog post, this tweet by @henrywarren has been retweeted over 8,000 times!

Lego definitely had it nailed.

Unlike LEGO, however, product development doesn’t come with a set of instructions.

It involves a great deal of creative thinking, expertise, and an innovator’s mindset to overcome common product development pitfalls.

Yet, like LEGO Mindstorms, there are simple design practices that you can incorporate to achieve manufacturing and commercial success.

Anyone can find fresh and innovative solutions with the right approach, tools, and partners to help along the way.

Are you interested in learning more about how Creation and our Medical Device Design and Manufacturing services can help you innovate and succeed?

Give me a call at 262.501.6686 or send me an email any time.

P.S. For even the most experienced designers, Product Development can be a real challenge. Nate and I presented ‘DFX and You: Making the Transition from Design to Manufacturing’ last week at Hamline University in Minneapolis as part of LSA’s educational workshops. Stay tuned for an upcoming post!

Basic Electronics Design for Environment (DfE)

Electronics Design for Environment
Basic Electronics Design for Environment

Reading a post from Technology Forecasters’ Pam Gordon, Outsmarting Waste in Electronics, a personal event came to mind.

I have a two-year-old front-loading washing machine that recently broke. The door lock would not engage – it made a very soft, sickly ‘click’ sound instead of the firm thump of a solenoid.

After cursing once or twice, I read related horror stories on a few blogs and decided to try fixing the problem myself. I purchased a replacement part on Amazon and watched a Youtube video for my service training. The whole fix took about 7 minutes to complete.

The part I replaced was a door lock assembly. It’s a slightly curved plastic part with compartments to hold the solenoid and interlock switches. The plastic was broken.

What I find amazing is that an engineer like me could have easily predicted where the stress points on the plastic would be, and, therefore where it would break. The company should have known as well, they had enough complaints about it online!

Sadly, a simple tooling change would have prevented this issue entirely.

As designers we rarely have Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle as the first three line items on our specifications.

However, as consumers we are brutally aware of the failure to consider these issues when we go to the store to buy more ink and realize with shock that a new printer costs less than a replacement cartridge.

Here are a few simple things we should consider as we Design for Environment.

Basic Electronics Design for Environment (DfE):

  1. Minimize the number of parts
  2. Select environmentally friendly materials where possible
  3. Consider the method of disposal
  4. Design for Serviceability
  5. If electrolytic capacitors are used, select a working voltage at least 2X the expected voltage. Use low ESR if large currents are expected. Have at least 20 degree C rating above the maximum environmental temperature.
  6. Don’t believe the power ratings in data sheets. Consider deration curves carefully and under-drive LEDs and power parts as much as possible to extend their life. Note: PWM may not provide a true power averaging, peak currents affect junctions.
  7. Conformal coat PCB assemblies if dust and moisture protection is necessary
  8. Be aware of shock and vibration. Observe the mass of the components as well as the orientation and mounting.
  9. Perform an FMEA to identify weaknesses

In this disposable society, let’s start making the ‘Repair or Replace’ decision a lot more difficult.

Learn more about our complete Design Services on our website, or give me a call any time at 262.501.6686 if you’d like to discuss DfE or DFX. Maybe you have a washing machine horror story of your own!

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