Work with a world leader in implantable plastic manufacturing and component machining.
For over 20 years Orthoplastics has established itself as the number one choice to transform orthopaedic component concepts into reality.
As a world leader in implantable plastic manufacturing and component machining they have the expertise to navigate customers through the complexities of production, compliance and accreditation, getting medical component products to market quickly and saving customers valuable time and money.
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High standards and expectations at Orthoplastics demand that all customers are provided with premium quality products. Therefore, Orthoplastics use a process called Direct Compression Moulding to sinter polymers. This method of moulding polymers results in an outstanding high gloss finish, thereby resulting in a near net shape, or net shape component.
Extra attention has been paid to advancing this method, allowing Orthoplastics to use the optimum approaches towards producing the best possible UHMWPE components for their clients. Orthoplastics successfully developed an ‘insert moulding’ process which enables them to mould UHMWPE onto or into another titanium, steel or ceramic part.
A direct consequence of industry leading research and development activities has allowed Orthoplastics to successfully ensure that they have the capability to manufacture crosslinked UHMWPE.
The benefit of manufacturing UHMWPE in this manner, is a significant reduction in wear on the medical application. By using a process which exposes standard UHMWPE to ionising radiation, it allows Orthoplastics to produce a higher grade of UHMWPE, otherwise referred to as Crosslinked UHMWPE, bringing major benefits to medical implant manufacturers, and the patient community.
Recent developments at Orthoplastics have allowed for the addition of Vitamin-E into UHMWPE plastics. The benefit of adding Vitamin-E to UHMWPE is the increase in lifespan of the medical implant, providing an obvious long term benefit to the patient.
It has been scientifically proven that Vitamin E is an effective oxygen scavenger, and as a result of this, it leads to a reduction in oxidation after irradiation has taken place.
For over 40 years, UHMWPE has been the chosen material to use within the production of medical implant applications. Ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene, otherwise known as UHMWPE, has been relied upon due to its high resistance to abrasion and wear, including its incredibly strong and durable properties.
Its high abrasion resistance and toughness means that it is an exceptionally attractive solution to the complexities of wear. Orthoplastics manufacture UHMWPE from Celanese GUR® 1020, 1050 and 1020-E polymer.
Orthoplastics are the experts in all aspects of CNC machining of implantable grade plastics, and have invested in an impressive portfolio of high end CNC machines. It’s dedicated, environmentally controlled machining facility, has been purpose built to provide customers and device manufacturers with a full range of component machining services.
The range of value added services offered by Orthoplastics include one-off prototyping, pre-production validation runs or a complete outsourcing service. The investment into equipment and technology has been implemented with the customer in mind, allowing Orthoplastics to provide a tailored service to meet any component machining requirement.
Many ideas simply don’t get past the concept stage due to the technical, regulatory and cost barriers that exist. Orthoplastics are experts at supporting new start-up businesses that wish to produce new orthopaedic concepts.
With the knowledge and expertise, combined with its own laboratory and latest CNC machining centres and lathes, Orthoplastics can navigate businesses through the complexities of production, compliance and accreditation, getting its new product concepts to market quickly.
Orthoplastics’ Direct Compression Moulding services are at the cutting edge of new product development. Although the technology has been in existence since the 1990’s, the new generation of technologies which have been invested in, particularly the 3D printer, allows printed metals and other porous metals technologies to be created. This has provided Orthoplastics with the ability and opportunity to over-mould plastics, and create a mono-block solution for customers and device manufacturers.
Although Direct Compression Moulding is a premium method of sintering the polymer - compared to traditional consolidation methods - it has the capability to produce products which cannot currently be produced, pushing the design envelope for medical grade orthopaedic components.
By focusing on innovation, this method of manufacture has produced unique over moulding capabilities. Producing Mono block components that have a high gloss moulded surface. These design and aesthetically pleasing products provide an alternative market solution to any OEM’s portfolio. Each component is individually moulded, allowing the finite controlling of all aspects of pressure, temperature and time, during critical consolidation. The finished product’s high gloss surface finish and tolerances are superior when compared to a machined UHMWPE component.
To achieve crosslinking, UHMWPE is exposed to ionising radiation, usually either an electron beam or a gamma source, commonly Cobalt 60. In order to carry out this process of crosslinking UHMWPE, two important control factors must be in place; dose level and oxidation.
Firstly, dose level is critical to the residual mechanical strength, which decreases as the dose quantity rises. Controlling this process is critical for ensuring batch to batch, and part to part consistency.
The second stage of crosslinking UHMWPE is oxidation. This process is the direct outcome of generating free radicals after exposure to ionising energy. Oxidation is dealt with by firstly annealing or re-melting soon after irradiation and then removing the newly exposed surface of the rods by only a few millimetres.
Over many years, Orthoplastics has developed and validated our crosslinking process to achieve tighter dose distribution; these studies have resulted in greater product uniformity and performance characteristics.
Using selected vendors for e-beam, gamma and x-ray crosslinking, we can manufacture bespoke crosslinked variants for OEM’s across the world, to optimise material performance for each orthopaedic design.
Vitamin E is the collective term which is given to the group of tocopherols. From within this group, alphatocopherol within Vitamin E acts as a free radical scavenger, which reduces long term in-vivo oxidation. Simply put, alphatocopherol shows the best properties as an antioxidant and therefore, provides additional benefits to the implantable device.
When adding Vitamin E to the UHMWPE, Orthoplastics have identified that it is absolutely vital to ensure that the Vitamin E is distributed evenly, to guarantee part-to-part product consistency.
Orthoplastics’ Vitamin E material is produced in accordance with ASTM F2965, a quality control guideline which has been adopted to consistently guarantee quality levels within every manufactured product. All mechanical properties remain unchanged throughout the process of adding Vitamin E to the implant and the exceptional GUR UHMWPE premium grade standards are still achieved.
A very uniform Vitamin E distribution is achieved within all of the UHMWPE plastics which are manufactured at Orthoplastics, and the typically high standards of product cleanliness and appearance are maintained.
Orthoplastics manufacture and supply the highest quality UHMWPE in the World. The quality of these plastics has been regularly documented as an exceptional development within the medical sector and has resulted in Orthoplastics being renowned as the producer of the highest quality UHMWPE products to the market.
This manufacturing breakthrough has seen Orthoplastics supply the world’s leading orthopaedic device manufacturers. Premium grade UHMWPE products, which have been expertly manufactured and moulded, are used for various different orthopaedic implants such as applications for hips, knees, shoulders, elbows, ankles and fingers.
Orthoplastics manufacture a wide range of industry leading, custom engineered UHMWPE plastics, which are available in rods and sheets, together with rods and blocks which can then be moulded and cut into specifically requested shapes and sizes.
As a result of producing specific sizes of UHMWPE material in advance, enables Orthoplastics to reduce the amount of time required to machine components, thus accelerating the production time and saving customers valuable time and money.